21 September 2021
Clifford Chance advises Azelis and its majority shareholder EQT on EUR 1.8 billion IPO, marking the third largest IPO ever on Euronext Brussels
International law firm Clifford Chance has advised Azelis, a leading global innovation service provider for the specialty chemicals and food ingredients industry, and its majority shareholder EQT, on Azelis's initial public offering and the listing of its shares on Euronext Brussels.
Azelis is a leading global innovation service provider for the specialty chemicals and food ingredients industry present in over 50 countries across the globe with around 2,800 employees. Azelis's expertise in distribution and formulation allow it to serve as the conduit between over 2,200 specialty chemicals and food ingredients suppliers and over 45,000 customers that cater to diversified life sciences and industrial chemicals end markets. The IPO coincides with Azelis's 20th anniversary and follows a period of sustained growth and expansion under EQT's ownership.
Based on the offer price, the implied market capitalization of Azelis is EUR 6.1 billion. The total value of the offering amounts to EUR 1.8 billion (assuming the full exercise of the over-allotment option), which represents the third largest ever listing on Euronext Brussels and the largest Belgian IPO since 2004.
A cross-border team advised on the deal, led by Brussels-based corporate partner Niek De Pauw and Paris-based U.S. securities partner Alex Bafi, who were supported by senior associates Drew Rundus in London and Valérie Demeur in Brussels. Key contributions were also made by associates Gillis Waelkens, Arthur Barbé and Glenn L'hoëst in Brussels and Kelly Frevele in London. Corporate advice to Azelis and EQT was provided by Spencer Baylin, Martin Kolmar, Priya Shah and Georgia Demeure in London. Taner Hassan, Thomas Critchley, Rachel Freeman and Liam Dunne in London and Lounia Czupper, Wim Aerts and Alexander Tanguy in Brussels advised on debt refinancing matters.
Niek De Pauw commented: "The success of this transaction is a testament to the strength of the business Azelis has built and the value that EQT has contributed as its majority owner. It is a privilege to support Azelis and EQT on one of the premier transactions in the Belgian market in recent years. I am proud that our international team helped make this success possible."
Alex Bafi commented: "We were delighted to act for Azelis and EQT on this landmark transaction, which represents the largest Belgian IPO in over a decade. This transaction builds on our leading EMEA capital markets practice, having also acted on the recent IPOs of SYNLAB, CTP, InPost, Allegro, THG, JDE Peet's, Adyen and others."
Clifford Chance has advised on many of the largest recent European equity listings, including InPost (Europe's largest ever tech IPO), Allegro (IFR EMEA IPO of the Year 2020), The Hut Group (the largest IPO on the LSE in 2020) and JDE Peet's (Europe's largest IPO in 2020). The Clifford Chance team has also advised in recent years on the European IPOs of Adyen (IFLR Equity Deal of the Year 2019) and Network International (IFR EMEA IPO of the Year 2019 and the largest IPO on the LSE in 2019).