Swedish private equity fund EQT Mid Market has acquired a majority ownership in Touhula Varhaiskasvatus Oy, a Finnish early education service provider, from Cor Group‘s Coronaria Hoitoketju Oy.
Touhula was founded in 2010 and today operates over 80 pre-schools and day-care centers across Finland. The company has a unique high-quality education philosophy and operates two different brands: Touhula and Aarresaari, encouraging children to natural physical activity and adventure.
“The Touhula way – our new purpose-built facilities and high quality early education services – have received very positive feedback from parents in over 30 municipalities across Finland. With satisfied parents and EQT as a responsible owner, Touhula will be able to expand to new areas in Finland and in the future provide additional services and day-care concepts”, says Touhula’s CEO Jari Mäki-Runsas.
“EQT is an active and responsible owner, with a long history of developing companies and adding value to society by having a sustainable and long term approach. Touhula has excellent service concepts, as well as high levels of customer and employee satisfaction, which signal that the business is run in a good and sustainable manner. We believe EQT is well suited to support the Company’s growth in Finland, and add value to society at large through high-quality pre-school education services”, says Jarkko Murtoaro, director at EQT Partners, investment advisor to EQT Mid Market.
“EQT has been present in Finland for almost 20 years, and we continue to see interesting investment opportunities. EQT’s investment philosophy is to help companies grow and develop into great and sustainable companies, both under EQT’s ownership and with future owners. We believe EQT can accelerate Touhula’s development even further, for example by adding the world class know-how of our industrial advisor network. We are very pleased to have the current owners to continue as minority shareholders of Touhula”, says Vesa Koskinen, partner at EQT Partners.
Touhula’s current management, and its existing investors Cor Group Oy, Finnish Industry Investment Oy and Norvestia Oyj will continue as minority shareholders. The transaction is subject to approval of the Finnish Competition Authority and is expected to be completed in April 2016.
Cor Group Ltd, founded in 1988, is an innovative Finnish growth venture. The group’s business operations are based on creating and recognizing successful new businesses, as well as on supporting their growth. The primary business areas of the strongly product development oriented group are health care, digital media as well as housing and services development.
Coronaria Hoitoketju Oy Ltd is one of the leading providers specialized in health care and wellbeing in Finland. It offers multifaceted health services from primary to specialized health care. The company also provides day care and care services for various categories of customers. Coronaria is part of Cor Group Ltd.
Touhula Varhaiskasvatus Oy is a Finnish early education service provider. Touhula Day Care Centers offers high-quality stimulating pre-school education in a fun and safe environment. Touhula has received the ISO9001 quality certificate. Aarresaari Day Care Centers are focused on activity, music and adventure. Touhula takes care of approximately 6,000 children and employs approximately 1,000 day care professionals.
As a private company, Touhula complements the welfare services provided by municipalities and increases the options available to parents in choosing a suitable day-care provider for their children. The majority of Touhula’s day-care centers operate under a voucher model. The voucher model ensures equal access to private day care to all Finnish families.
EQT is a leading global private equity group with approximately EUR 29 billion in raised capital. EQT has portfolio companies in Europe, Asia and the US with total sales of more than EUR 17 billion and approximately 140,000 employees. EQT works with portfolio companies to achieve sustainable growth, operational excellence and market leadership. EQT Partners is the investment advisor to all the group’s funds. It has around 370 employees, of which approximately 200 are within the investment advisory teams. EQT is headquartered in Stockholm, Sweden. The firm and its affiliates have additional offices in Amsterdam, Copenhagen, Frankfurt, Guernsey, Helsinki, Hong Kong, London, Luxembourg, Madrid, Munich, New York, Oslo, Shanghai, Singapore, Warsaw and Zurich. The company was founded in 1994 by Investor AB, US-based private equity firm AEA Investors, and SEB Asset management.
Investor AB (INVEB.ST) is a Swedish industrial holding company, founded in 1916 and controlled by the Wallenberg family through their Foundation Asset Management company FAM, whose chairman is Peter Wallenberg, Jr., a board member of EQT. The company owns controlling stakes in several large Swedish companies, such as Molnlycke Health Care, Aleris and Grand Hotel, with minority stakes in in global listed companies such as such as Atlas Copco, ABB, SEB, AstraZeneca, Ericsson, Electrolux, Saab, NASDAX OMX, Husqvarna and Saab.
EQT Infrastructure II is a EUR 1.925 billion fund investing in medium-sized infrastructure businesses in the Nordic region, parts of Continental Europe, and North America. Investment targets are regulated infrastructure, concession-based infrastructure, market-based infrastructure and infrastructure-related services.