Noting "recent press speculation", UK waste company Shanks Group plc has confirmed contemplating the possible acquisition of Dutch waste and recycling group Van Gansewinkel. Given Shanks' presence on the Benelux solid waste management market, its board of directors believes the acquisition "has the potential to transform and enhance the company’s position in this market", indicating that "strong synergies exist" between the operations of the two companies.
In its statement released on 24 May, the British firm said that "after a period of preliminary due diligence, Shanks will shortly be submitting an updated, indicative non-binding proposal to the supervisory board of Van Gansewinkel for consideration. Accordingly, there can be no certainty that any transaction will occur nor as to the terms of any transaction." The possible acquisition has been deemed a reverse takeover by the UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), Shanks noted.
The Van Gansewinkel Groep was taken over by a group of its lenders in a debt for equity swap last July after its previous owners – financial investors led by Kohlberg Kravis & Roberts (KKR) and CVC Capital Partners – transferred their shares to a group of senior creditors. The transaction slashed the Dutch firm's debts by 60 per cent, from €800m to €320m.