23. February 2021
Daniel Pfund, Senior Financial Analyst
Last week Lonza reported that it sold its chemical division (Lonza Specialty Ingredients, LSI) to Bain Capital and Cinven for CHF 4.2 billion. This price values the division at a multiple of 13x the estimated 2020 EBITDA. This was a good surprise as the market expected a price closer to CHF 3.5-4.0 billion. The news was expected because Lonza had been trying to sell the division for several years. The wait was long, but surely the process took longer than expected because Lonza wanted a good price. The transaction is expected to close in the second half of 2021.
The question now is what Lonza will do with the money. The company has already announced that they will invest a lot in the short term in new production capacity (capex will account for about 16-18% of sales in 2021 and 2022). In addition, Lonza would like to make an acquisition in the field of filling and finishing vials for vaccines.So it seems natural that it would retain all or at least a large majority of the money.