KKR, a leading global investment firm, and Bettcher Industries (“Bettcher”), a KKR portfolio company, announced that Bettcher has completed the acquisition of Frontmatec, a global manufacturer of end-to-end automated solutions for pork and beef processing with world-class robotics capabilities. Frontmatec will join Bettcher, a leading manufacturer of protein processing equipment, to form a global market leader in protein processing automation.
The acquisition of Frontmatec represents an important step in building a diversified, scaled platform of food processing automation technologies with best-in-class capabilities to serve customers globally. Frontmatec’s leading robotics, vision systems, intelligent software and other capabilities as well as its global footprint and strong presence in Europe, are highly strategic and complementary to Bettcher’s leading focus on semi-automated protein processing tools and automated poultry processing systems.
Dan Daniel, Executive Advisor at KKR and Chairman of Bettcher, said, “We are excited to establish and build a platform that brings together two great companies who share a common vision of solving their customers’ problems in the protein processing automation space. From a strategic standpoint, the acquisition will allow us to invest in even greater innovation that helps our customers achieve enhanced productivity, automation and worker safety on a global scale. We are excited to continue building on the platform from here.”
As part of a KKR-owned platform, Bettcher and Frontmatec will continue to operate independently under their existing brands and leadership teams. The companies expect to collaborate on sharing best practices and driving future innovation and product development. They will also explore further strategic acquisition opportunities, including bringing additional businesses with leading brands into the platform.
Frontmatec CEO, Allan Kristensen, said, “Bringing the strengths of our companies together will enable us to deliver special innovation to the market. Culturally, our two companies are a great fit as we share the same passion for customer focus, developing high-quality solutions that will meet the accelerating global demand for higher yields in production as well as improved food quality and worker/people safety.”
The employee engagement program established by KKR will be extended to all Frontmatec employees. A key pillar of the program is allowing all employees to take part in the benefits of ownership by granting them the opportunity to participate in any equity return alongside KKR.
KKR’s investments in Bettcher and Frontmatec were made through its North America Fund XIII.