ALUMINIUM DUFFEL PREPARES FOR ITS FUTURE
SETTLES ALL DISPUTES WITH FORMER OWNERS
DUFFEL, Belgium, Jan. 13, 2023 /PRNewswire/ -- Aluminium Duffel BV, the operator of the aluminium rolling mill located in Duffel, Belgium, one of the largest and most modern in Europe, along with its holding company Aluminium Belgium BV announced that it has settled all disputes with its former owners.
Aluminium Duffel is wholly owned by funds managed by American Industrial Partners (AIP) as part of its ELEMENT 13 global aluminium businesses.
In the fourth quarter of 2022, Aluminium Belgium fully and amicably settled two alternative dispute resolution proceedings (ADRs) with affiliates of Novelis, Inc. These ADRs were initiated in 2020 and 2021, following the purchase of Aluminium Duffel by the GFG Alliance from Novelis. As part of these settlements, Novelis extended certain Transition Services Agreements previously in place in order to enable Aluminium Duffel to install its own scalper, which has now been ordered for installation in 2024. The settlements were finalized in consultation with the European Commission as part of the 2019 takeover of Aleris by Novelis. The other terms of these settlements are confidential. Novelis has no ownership interest in any of the Duffel entities now owned by funds managed by AIP.
In the fourth quarter of 2022, Aluminium Belgium and Aluminium Duffel also fully and amicably settled various court actions in Belgium involving various entities which are members of the GFG Alliance. As part of these settlements, Ecnavla 8 UK Ltd, a United Kingdom entity which as part of the GFG Alliance previously owned Aluminium Belgium, has been restored to solvency and is expected to exit administration in the UK in 2023, at which point it will remain owned by the GFG Alliance. The other terms of these settlements are confidential. The GFG Alliance has no ownership interest in any of the Duffel entities now owned by funds managed by AIP.
In the wake of these settlements, Aluminium Duffel was able in the fourth quarter of 2022 to complete the recapitalization of its balance sheet. Although AIP purchased control of Aluminium Duffel on June 13, 2022, funds affiliated with AIP were primarily secured lenders to the Duffel companies. Upon completion of the recapitalization, AIP has converted substantial portions of the loans it held into common equity and the remaining loans have been restructured to provide for extended maturities, reduced interest rates and other market-based terms.
Geert Vannuffelen, President of Aluminium Duffel, commented: “These completed settlements with our former owners, combined with AIP’s substantial debt-for-equity conversion, position Duffel very well in 2023 to continue to properly serve its customers, as well as adding stability for Duffel’s suppliers, its highly trained workforce and the surrounding community.”
In these matters, AIP was represented by Jones Day, Sidley LLP, Baker Botts L.L.P. and Weil, Gotshal and Manges LLP, and Aluminium Duffel was represented by Loyens & Loeff.
About Aluminium Duffel: Founded in 1946, with numerous expansions and modernizations since then, Aluminium Duffel is a leading manufacturer of aluminium rolled products in Europe, specializing in auto body sheet and a wide variety of industrial products, used primarily in the automotive, transportation, distribution, and architecture, design construction industries. Aluminium Duffel has up to 250,000 tons per year of nameplate production capacity, with annual turnover of approximately €600 million and over 1,000 full-time employees. Located near Antwerp, Belgium, Aluminium Duffel BV (BE) is the operating company which owns the assets, employs the workforce and does business with customers and suppliers. Aluminium Duffel is certified against the ASI Performance Standard and the ASI Chain of Custody Standard, which embody the highest standards of responsible sourcing, emissions and production quality.
About AIP: AIP is an operationally-oriented middle market private equity firm that distinctively focused on buying and improving industrial businesses with operations in the U.S., Canada and other developed markets. The AIP Team has deep roots in the industrial economy and has been active in private equity investing across three economic cycles and two decades. To date, AIP has completed over 125 platform and add-on transactions and currently has manages approximately $10 billion of assets under management on behalf of its limited partners. Among AIP’s over 25 portfolio companies are Commonwealth Rolled Products, which operates the Lewisport, Kentucky rolling mill, a leader in aluminum rolled products serving the automotive and industrial markets in the United States, and Aluminium Dunkerque of Loon-Plage, France, the largest aluminium smelter in Europe. For more information on AIP, visit www.americanindustrial.com.
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SOURCE American Industrial Partners