Ardian partners with management to acquire Gantner technologies from Identec group


Press release

Ardian partners with management to acquire Gantner technologies from Identec group

  • 17 February 2016

  • Expansion

  • Germany, Frankfurt / Schruns (Austria)

6 minutes de lecture

Pioneer of contactless RFID and NFC solutions to pursue further growth with the support of Ardian.

Ardian, the independent private investment company, today announces that it has signed an agreement with Identec Group AG to acquire, alongside management, GANTNER Holding GmbH (GANTNER), a pioneer in the field of contactless RFID and NFC electronic access control, payment and staff time recording solutions.

The acquisition represents the 13th investment to be made from the €500 million Expansion Fund III. The parties agreed not to disclose further details of the transaction, completion of which is still subject to approval by the relevant antitrust authorities.

Founded in 1982 and headquartered in Schruns, Austria, GANTNER is a leading international manufacturer of contactless RFID and NFC access control and staff time recording systems facilitating automatic identification. GANTNER solutions can be found in leisure facilities such as fitness clubs, water parks, public pools and spas, as well as in commercial and public buildings. GANTNER provides integrated overall solutions for membership and visitor management and cashless payments, as well as for high security access control (doors, cabinets and lockers) and staff time recording systems. 

GANTNER develops and produces both the hardware and the software required to run the systems, offering its customers integrated overall solutions. GANTNER is the market leader in the niche segment for fitness clubs in Europe, counting many of the most prestigious leisure facilities among its clients – among them well-known brands such as FitnessFirst, Holmes Place, McFit and Elements. It’s also one of the three biggest companies in the public pools and spas segment. GANTNER has subsidiaries in Germany, the UK, Dubai and Australia and operates in more than 60 countries. Around a quarter of its global workforce of more than 200 is employed in R&D. More than 70% of revenues are currently generated in Europe. For the 2015 financial year the company recorded revenues of approximately €36 million, a year-on-year increase of over 20%. 

As part of the transaction, the existing management team, which has been successfully overseeing the GANTNER growth strategy for more than ten years, will invest in the company, thus providing the continuity that will ensure its further successful development. With the backing of Ardian, management is planning to further strengthen GANTNER’s leading position as a highly innovative supplier of NFC systems and to boost growth by tapping into new markets as well as seeking bolt-on acquisitions. 

Elmar Hartmann, Managing Director of GANTNER, said: “With our long-term experience, our in-house R&D skills and our excellent team, we offer our clients the most innovative product solutions combined with state-of-the-art technology. In Ardian we have found an entrepreneurial partner who not only understands our business but who will also support us in accelerating GANTNER’s international expansion. We look forward to continuing our successful growth path together with Ardian.“

Dirk Wittneben, Head of Ardian Expansion in Germany, added: “The success of GANTNER is down to its innovative products, an experienced team with excellent know-how, and long-term customer relationships. We look forward to working alongside management to build on the existing product portfolio and to provide support for the company’s international growth. Additionally, we will offer GANTNER support through our international network as it moves to enter new markets.“


Founded 30 years ago in Schruns, Austria, the company is considered a pioneer in the field of contactless RFID and NFC electronic access control and staff time recording solutions in its core segments. GANTNER supplies solutions based on RFID technology for leisure facilities such as fitness clubs, attraction and water parks, public pools and spas, as well as universities and libraries and other commercial and public buildings. The solutions include access control, electronic locking and locker systems, cashless payment, cash register and billing systems, as well as staff check-in and time recording solutions. GANTNER operates in more than 60 countries and has subsidiaries in Germany, the UK, Dubai, and Australia. The company has a worldwide workforce of more than 200. Elmar Hartmann has been managing director since 2003.


Ardian, founded in 1996 and led by Dominique Senequier, is an independent private investment company with assets of US$55bn managed or advised in Europe, North America and Asia. The company, which is majority-owned by its employees, keeps entrepreneurship at its heart and delivers investment performance to its global investors while fuelling growth in economies across the world. Ardian’s investment process embodies three values: excellence, loyalty and entrepreneurship.

Ardian maintains a truly global network, with more than 410 employees working through twelve offices in Paris, London, Frankfurt, Milan, Madrid, Zurich, New York, San Francisco, Beijing, Singapore, Jersey and Luxembourg. The company offers its 470 investors a diversified choice of funds covering the full range of asset classes through Ardian Direct Funds (comprising Ardian Mid Cap Buyout, Ardian Expansion, Ardian Growth and Ardian Co-Investment), Ardian Infrastructure, Ardian Funds of Funds (comprising primary, early secondary and secondary activities), Ardian Private Debt, Ardian Real Estate and customized mandate investment solutions with Ardian Mandates.


IDENTEC GROUP is a leading global provider of machine–to–machine ("M2M") solutions. The group identifies, measures, tracks and traces assets along the entire value chain, supplying cloud-based information. As a one-stop shop, IDENTEC GROUP offers all relevant products (consultancy, software, hardware, service). Solutions elaborated by the group have assisted numerous companies in various sectors all over the world to increase their efficiency and their effectiveness and as a result also their competitiveness.


  • Ardian Team

    • Dirk Wittneben, Marc Abadir, Florian Korp, Yannic Metzger
    • Financial: Deloitte (Egon Sachsalber, Johann Christoph Pfeiffer)
    • Commercial: goetzpartners (Georg Hochleitner, Norbert Danneberg)
    • Legal: Willkie Farr & Gallagher (Mario Schmidt, Maximilian Schwab, Jan Willms (Finance)); Binder Grösswang (Thomas Schirmer, Bernd Schneiderbauer, Hermann Schneeweiss)
    • Tax: taxess (Gerald Thomas, Richard Schäfer)
    • Insurance: Aon (Christoph von Lehmann, Hans Jörg Pezzei)
    • Environmental: ERM (Werner Schulte)
    • M&A: Commerzbank (Wolfgang Frey)
    • M&A (Sell Side): Altium (Alexander Grünwald, Thomas Eulau, Nicola Sprenger, Arjeta Berisha)
    • Legal (Sell Side): Frieders, Tassul & Partner (Christian Tassul, Edgar Langeder)

Press contact

ARDIAN Headland


+44 207 3675 240