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New Nomacorc owners eye acquisitions after buyout deal

The founder of the world's largest producer of synthetic corks, Nomacorc, may pursue acquisitions after joining with Bespoke Capital to buy out the group's previous majority owner, Summit Partners.

Nomacorc’s founder and chairman, Marc Noel, and Boston-based Bespoke Capital have become the 100% owners of the wine closure firm, they said. They recapitalised the business to buy out Summit, which has held a majority stake since 2007.

Financial details have not been disclosed, but Dow Jones newswire reported an unnamed source as saying the deal was worth $200m. Both the Noel Group and Bespoke Capital will have a 50% stake, a spokesperson for Nomacorc told Decanter.com.

Nomacorc may be unknown to most wine drinkers, but many consumers will have pulled its corks from bottles. The firm has sold 20bn closures since its birth 15 years ago and estimated in 2013 that it had a 13% share of the global wine closure market. It constitutes 70% of the synthetic corks market.

Noel and Bespoke Capital said they believed the wine market was ripe for acquisitions.

‘We invested in Nomacorc as a platform for consolidation of the highly fragmented supply chain in the $250bn global wine industry,’ said Bespoke’s co-managing partner, Mark Harms.

It is common for private equity companies to envisage selling assets within around five years of acquiring them, but Noel said Bespoke planned to invest in Nomacorc over the long-term.

Nomacorc has factories in the US, Belgium, Argentina and China.

Although it has become known for reconstituted, synthetic closures, the group recently launched a new type of closure made from sugar cane polymers, named Select Bio. The move was part of a strategy to reduce the firm’s reliance on oil-based plastics.

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Written by Chris Mercer

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