Frankfurt am Main / Nueziders (Austria), 15th October 2020 – Ardian, a world-leading private investment house, has sold GANTNER Electronic Austria Holding GmbH (“Gantner”). The company, which specializes in electronic access, ticketing and billing systems as well as smart locks for lockers, will be acquired by SALTO Systems (“SALTO”), a leading manufacturer of access control and electronic locking solutions. The parties have agreed not to disclose the details of the transaction.
Founded in 1982 and headquartered in Nueziders, Austria, Gantner is a leading European manufacturer of systems that enable automatic and contactless identification, based on RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) and NFC (Near Field Communication) technology.
Gantner systems comprise integrated solutions for membership and visitor management, cashless payments, time recording in business organizations and security. Its customers range across various areas, including fitness clubs and medical fitness facilities), Attraction (water parks, spas, museums and other cultural facilities, ski storage, golf courses and amusement parks), Corporate (smart employee lockers for flexible work models, access control solutions for industrial companies, healthcare staff, public facilities and cashless payment systems for company cafeterias) and Education (universities, libraries and schools).
Since Ardian took a majority stake in Gantner in 2016, the company has continued with its established strategy, providing customers with integrated solutions through targeted investments in research & development, as well as the expansion of the product range.
In June 2017, the product portfolio was expanded to include ticketing and management software for leisure facilities with the acquisition of Syx Automations. This was followed by the acquisition of Contidata in June 2020, with which Gantner expanded its offering to include market-leading cashless payment systems for company cafeterias. As part of its international expansion, the company was able to increase its market share, particularly in the USA, the UK and the Benelux countries. As a result, since 2015 Gantner has doubled in revenues and increased the number of employees from 200 to 450.
Headquartered in Spain, with more than 750 employees in offices spanning 32 countries, SALTO is a global leader in the development and manufacturing of world-class access control solutions, particularly in sectors where security is critical: education, healthcare, commercial, hospitality, retail, working spaces, residential and co-living, and Purpose Built Student Accommodation (PBSA). The company revolutionized access control with a pioneering approach that featured the first stand-alone, battery-powered electronic lock; the SALTO Virtual Network (SVN) data-on-card technology; and the first wireless access control system that combined a stand-alone locking device with online, real-time capabilities — all without using wires or mechanical keys. The company has expanded its portfolio to include world-class software management, cloud solutions, and mobile applications. With the addition of the Gantner portfolio, SALTO will now have the combined strength and joint capacity of one million access points annually.
Elmar Hartmann, CEO of GANTNER, said: “The collaboration with Ardian as an entrepreneurial partner was a true success story. During the past four years, we have been able to continue our steep growth curve and doubled our size. With innovative products and integrated solutions for contactless access, ticketing and billing systems as well as flexible workspaces, we are, becoming a truly global player that significantly shapes the market in our segments. Thanks to the new partnership with Salto, we can expand our product portfolio, take advantage of important synergies, better target our markets and address customer segments with precision. This puts us in an optimal position to continue our growth. I would like to thank Ardian for their excellent cooperation, which was both inspiring and respectful, and look forward to continuing the successful development of our company with SALTO.”
Javier Roquero, SALTO Co-founder and CEO, said adding Gantner to the SALTO portfolio offers a “very bright future.”
“We are very excited to welcome Gantner to the SALTO family,” said Roquero. “The Gantner product suite enriches and diversifies the SALTO product offering, enhancing our end user experience and improves our ability to continue to deliver the absolute best in electronic access control.”
Dirk Wittneben, Managing Director at Ardian and responsible for the investments of the Expansion team in the DACH region, added: “We are proud to have supported Gantner in its internationalization, important strategic acquisitions and the development of new industries and customers. As a result, the company has been able to expand its product range and geographic coverage. We want to take this opportunity to thank Gantner’s management team and employees for their trust and cooperation. We know SALTO is a good fit for further development in the future.”
Founded in Schruns, Austria in 1982, the company is widely considered to be a pioneer in contactless electronic access management and time recording systems in its core segments. Gantner offers its customers solutions based on RFID and NFC technology for use in gyms, public pools and spas, theme parks, universities and libraries, and in commercial properties and public buildings. The solutions include access systems, electronic locking and locker systems, cashless payment, cash register and billing systems, staff time recording systems as well as ticketing and management software for leisure facilities.
Gantner operates in around 70 countries worldwide and has subsidiaries in Germany, Belgium, the Netherlands, the UK, Dubai, India, Australia, and the USA. The company has a worldwide workforce of 450. Elmar Hartmann has been managing director since 2003.
Ardian is a world-leading private investment house with assets of US$100bn managed or advised in Europe, the Americas and Asia. The company is majority-owned by its employees. It keeps entrepreneurship at its heart and focuses on delivering excellent investment performance to its global investor base.
Through its commitment to shared outcomes for all stakeholders, Ardian’s activities fuel individual, corporate and economic growth around the world.
Holding close its core values of excellence, loyalty and entrepreneurship, Ardian maintains a truly global network, with more than 700 employees working from fifteen offices across Europe (Frankfurt, Jersey, London, Luxembourg, Madrid, Milan, Paris and Zurich), the Americas (New York, San Francisco and Santiago) and Asia (Beijing, Singapore, Tokyo and Seoul). It manages funds on behalf of around 1,000 clients through five pillars of investment expertise: Fund of Funds, Direct Funds, Infrastructure, Real Estate and Private Debt.
ABOUT SALTO SYSTEMS
SALTO Systems is a global leader in the development and manufacture of world-class access control solutions, particularly in sectors where security is critical: education, healthcare, commercial, hospitality, retail, working spaces, residential and co-living, and Purpose Built Student Accommodation (PBSA). The company revolutionized access control with a pioneering approach that featured the first stand-alone, battery-powered electronic lock; the SALTO Virtual Network (SVN) data-on-card technology; and the first wireless access control system that combined a stand-alone locking device with online, real-time capabilities — all without using wires or mechanical keys. Its leading-edge hardware and software technologies are in use worldwide with 5 million access points and an estimated 40 million daily users. SALTO has local offices in 32 countries and a partner network that extends its reach to nearly every region of the globe.
ADVISORS ON THE TRANSACTION
- Dirk Wittneben, Marc Abadir, Max Dolata, Marlon Sandvoss
- Financial: Deloitte (Egon Sachsalber, Tanya Fehr, Timo Weingärtner)
- Commercial: goetzpartners (Sigurd Kitzer, Dr. Norbert Danneberg, Dr. Burak Yahsi)
- ESG: INDEFI (Emmanuel Parmentier, Joanna Tirbakh, Renaud Muller)
- Legal Corporate: Willkie Farr & Gallagher (Dr. Maximilian Schwab, Dr. Matthias Schudlo)
- Legal Finance: Willkie Farr & Gallagher (Dr. Ralph Defren, Christopher Clerihew)
- Tax: Taxess (Gerald Thomas, Richard Schäfer)
- M&A Advisory: GCA Altium (Alexander Grünwald, Thomas Eulau)
ARDIAN - CHARLES BARKER CORPORATE COMMUNICATIONS
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