Hausen/Frankfurt am Main, Germany, August 3, 2021 – YT Industries (“YT”), a global high-performance mountain bike (“MTB”) brand, and Ardian, a world leading private investment house, have signed a partnership agreement to drive YT Industries’ growth. Ardian Expansion will invest in YT together with the company founders Markus Flossmann and Jacob Fatih - alongside the management team. The management team, led by former Amazon manager Sam Nicols who joined the company in 2020, and the founder and CVO Markus Flossmann, supported by Jacob Fatih’s business incubator Crealize, will focus on building out the company’s product portfolio, whilst simultaneously bringing YT’s brand and customer experience to the next level.
YT Industries was founded in 2008 in Essen, Germany, by Markus Flossmann and Jacob Fatih with the vision to provide high-quality and affordable dirt jump bikes for professional cyclists and bike enthusiasts. Since its inception, the company has evolved into an international and highly respected premium brand in the performance MTB segment. The abbreviation YT stands for Young Talent and the motto "Live Uncaged", featured across innovative marketing campaigns, inspires the loyal community behind the brand.
YT currently offers a diverse range of 40 MTBs, designed for various categories of mountain biking (i.e., downhill, enduro, all-mountain, trail, dirt) as well as complementary apparel and accessories. In addition, YT launched its highly successful e-MTB model “DECOY” in 2019, which now accounts for a significant share of sales. The company plans to enhance customer experience and service, integrate data-driven decision making and expand business across Europe and the US, the largest MTB market in the world. With a pure online direct-to-consumer business model, YT is able to offer highest quality performance MTBs with an excellent value for money proposition. YT bikes have led athletes to major competition titles such as World Championships and World Cup wins. Currently several world-class athletes such as elite downhill professionals Dakotah Norton from America and David Trummer from Austria, are using YT bikes in their training and competitive races.
Markus Flossmann, Co-founder and CVO of YT Industries, said: “We at YT are passionate mountain bikers, and we develop our bikes with heart and soul. Thanks to an outstanding team, YT has become one of the world’s most admired brands in the mountain bike space. Together with Ardian as our partner, we are looking forward to taking the company to the next level by expanding our business internationally and coming even closer to our customers. To us it is critical to stay true to our brand and stick to our core values, which made us successful: focus on quality, innovation, and our community. We are excited for the growth that this new partnership heralds and leading the company into the next chapter of its young history.”
Jacob Fatih, Co-founder and shareholder of YT Industries, said: “It has nearly been 15 years since my friend and Co-Founder Markus Flossmann and I built our first mountain bike to our own specifications and the rest is history. Our enthusiasm for sport and entrepreneurship are still what drive us every day – and this attitude has made YT one of the globally leading brands in professional mountain biking. We are fully convinced that with our new partner Ardian we will become even stronger, and our brand will continue to inspire both existing and new customers.”
Sam Nicols, CEO of YT Industries, added: “Markus and the team have done a great job in reinventing the mountain bike experience both in terms of product development and experience. We are already moving full speed ahead with our new strategy of increased customer focus underpinned by data-driven decision making, which will help us become even more successful in offering the best products at the right time with a seamless customer experience. I strongly believe that with Ardian as a partner with a strong international platform, Markus’ product and design expertise, and our new focus on operational excellence and
e-commerce, we will accelerate taking YT to the next level.”
Dirk Wittneben, Head of Ardian Expansion DACH, added: “The combination of one of the most popular performance MTB brands and the underlying structural growth of the international MTB markets provide significant growth potential for YT. The company’s innovative and ambitious founders and management team combine strong passion for the product, a highly successful marketing approach as well as an outstanding online direct-to-consumer distribution model. We are thrilled to be able to support Sam, Markus, and the wider management team to help them achieve their envisaged growth path.”
The transaction remains subject to the authorization by the competition authorities. The financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
LIST OF PARTICIPANTS
- Dirk Wittneben, Max Dolata, Nicolas Münzer, Marlon Sandvoss
- Legal: Stefan Koch, Tomislav Vrabec, Paul Kohlhaas (White & Case)
- Commercial / Operational: Andreas Stender, Jos van Iwaarden, Philipp Rupp, Daniel Stengel (Kearney)
- Digital: Jérôme Petit, Hannes Weissenteiner, Maxime Le Gouvello (Artefact)
- Financial: Murat Deniz, Dennis Ginzkey, Ergin Asil (8Advisory)
- Tax/Structuring: Jan Ole Buchert, Manuel Wall, Adrian Mayer (8Advisory)
- IT: Marc Bernstein; Hans Wamsteker (8Advisory)
- M&A: Arnold Holle, Aobo Zhang (Carlsquare)
- M&A: Alexander Grünwald, Thomas Eulau, Raymund Bareuther (GCA Altium)
- Legal: Dr. Jochen Lehmann, Dr. Moritz Kraft, Dr. Felix Aden (Schmidt, von der Osten & Huber)
- Legal: Gernot Giesecke (Theopark)
- Tax/Structuring: Dr. Melanie Köstler (Rödl & Partner), Michael Krumwiede (Theopark)
- Financial: Dennis Tunda, Jörg Schütze, Kim Lachmann (Deloitte)
Ardian is a world-leading private investment house with assets of US$114bn 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 750 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 more than 1,200 clients through five pillars of investment expertise: Fund of Funds, Direct Funds, Infrastructure, Real Estate and Private Debt.
Ardian on Twitter @Ardian
ABOUT YT INDUSTRIES
YT Industries was founded by Markus Flossmann in 2008 to give talented riders access to competitive dirt jump bikes. YT stands for Young Talent and reflects its founder’s approach to life: No matter the age, it is never too late to explore your hidden talent or passion and to try something new. It is never too late to LIVE UNCAGED.
To this day, YT focuses on mountain biking and offers a wide range of products from downhill and enduro to trail bikes as a direct-to-consumer brand. YT bikes are distinguished by high quality for an exceptional price. Be it Red Bull Rampage, Downhill World Championships, or World Cups, YT bikes have dominated at world-class events and carried the best athletes to major titles.
Tel: +49 9191 736305 195
ARDIAN - CHARLES BARKER CORPORATE COMMUNICATIONS
Tel: +49 69 79409027