Press & News
Europe’s largest confectionary is formed: arko acquires Hussel
Wahlstedt, Munich, 07 September 2018 – arko Holding GmbH, parent company to the confectionaries arko GmbH and J. Eilles GmbH & Co. KG, takes over the confectionary chain Hussel GmbH, formerly owned by EMERAM Capital Partners. The acquisition will take effect on 01 October, 2018.
The merger of the two leading confectionery retailers arko and Hussel will generate attractive economies of scale in retail and a Germany-wide presence for the brands. This will lay the foundation for joint growth and strengthen the competitiveness of the companies in the confectionery market in the long term. Both confectionery retailers are firmly rooted in the retail sector and complement each other in terms of their regional distribution networks and product ranges. The companies have agreed not to disclose the purchase price.
Since its foundation in 1948 in Wahlstedt, Schleswig-Holstein, arko has developed into the largest confectionery retailer in Germany in terms of area. Its extensive product portfolio is available in over 200 arko and 35 Eilles branches in Germany. The latter had already been acquired by J.J. Darboven in 2016. In addition, there are around 3,500 additional points of sale in food retailers and selected bakeries. arko employs around 850 people.
Hussel was founded in Hagen in 1949 and is already one of the leading German specialist retailers with 210 branches, with a focus on southern and western Germany. The company has 1,117 employees.
The merger of the companies and the three brands arko, Eilles and Hussel will create Europe's largest specialist confectionery retailer with a total of around 2,000 employees and 450 locations in Germany, Austria, the Czech Republic and Portugal. In Portugal, Hussel GmbH is involved in a joint venture with a local entrepreneurial family.
Patrick G. Weber, Managing Director of arko, says: "Both companies will benefit greatly from the merger. Hussel shares our commitment to the highest quality and excellent service as well as a deep understanding of tradition. When we took over the Eilles specialized stores, we showed that cooperative partnership with our new colleagues is a priority for us. We will present the three now united brands in a regional and target group-oriented manner."
Kai Panholzer, Managing Director of Hussel, adds: “After our time in the DOUGLAS-Group, EMERAM, as a financial investor, has supported us in our efforts to in strengthen our position in the market by working together constructively in a spirit of trust and partnership. Now it is time for the next step. With arko as our new owner, we are convinced that we have the ideal strategic partner for the future at our side. Thanks to important economies of scale, complementary product ranges and store networks, arko will better equip us for the future in the persistently difficult market environment of retail.”
Dr. Kai Obring, Senior Partner of EMERAM, comments: “With the handover to arko, Hussel will be transferred to a strong strategic investor. In recent years, we have faced the challenges of the retail market, consistently supported Hussel and helped to further develop its business. The merger with arko will create important growth potential for Hussel and strengthen the company’s long-term competitiveness. In order to ensure a smooth transition, we will continue to support the company constructively from a minority position in the coming years. We would like to thank the entire Hussel team for their commitment and wish the company and its employees continued success and all the best."
arko, based in Wahlstedt, Schleswig-Holstein, is the largest confectionery retailer in Germany in terms of area. The product portfolio includes fine specialities, biscuits, chocolates and pralines as well as exquisite teas and coffees. arko operates more than 230 stores in Germany under the brands arko and eilles. In addition, there are further branches in Austria and the Czech Republic as well as around 3,500 additional points of sale in food retailers and bakeries. arko employs around 850 employees.
Hussel is one of the leading confectionery vendors in Germany and Austria. As an experienced specialist in exquisite confectionery, the company provides a range of innovative, high-quality products and outstanding service in stylish surroundings. Its products are available from more than 200 shops and online.
arko Holding GmbH is the holding company of the Morzynski family from Hanover. Paul Morzynski, a chartered accountant and tax consultant by training, became active as an entrepreneur in the 1990s with the acquisition of the Halloren chocolate factory in Halle (Saale) and in 2013 with the acquisition of the Grand Hotel Heiligendamm on the Baltic Sea.
After the sale of the participation in the Halloren chocolate factory in 2017, the family’s entrepreneurial focus is now on the hospitality industry and specialist trade. In addition to Patrick G. Weber, arko Holding GmbH is currently headed by two sons, Marc and André Morzynski.
EMERAM Capital Partners is a leading equity investment company for SMEs in German-speaking countries. As a business development partner, we foster the long-term growth of our portfolio companies with capital and expertise.
The funds advised by EMERAM invest in the consumer, technology/software and service sectors. Their total volume currently stands at EUR 400 million. In general, the funds acquire a significant stake in the company and give the respective management team an opportunity to invest, too.