Ratos AB: GS-Hydro Holding Oy and its subsidiary GS-Hydro Oy file for bankruptcy


Press release  21 September 2017

Ratos's Finnish subsidiary GS-Hydro Holding Oy and its subsidiary GS-Hydro Oy have filed for bankruptcy today at the District Court of Kanta-Häme following consultation with Ratos and GS-Hydro's lenders.  

The Board of Directors of Ratos's Finnish subsidiary GS-Hydro Holding Oy and its subsidiary GS-Hydro Oy have resolved yesterday evening to initiate bankruptcy proceedings and have filed for bankruptcy at the District Court of Kanta-Häme today. The GS-Hydro Group has experienced liquidity and profitability problems for some time, and these became acute when one of the company's largest customers could not meet its payment commitments to a Group company within the GS-Hydro Group.

In recent years, Ratos has, together with the company's Board of Directors and management, implemented an extensive action programme. In combination with this Ratos has made substantial capital contributions since 2015. This has had effect but has taken long time and the company has also been under pressure in several geographical markets. The company's situation is primarily the result of a weak development and substantial price pressure in the offshore markets in combination with the company's insufficiently competitive market position.

"First and foremost, we naturally regret the worry and the consequences this situation has had on the company's employees, customers and suppliers. This is a decision we have tried to avoid for as long as possible," says Magnus Agervald, CEO of Ratos.

"Ratos has supported the company for a long time and worked intensively in recent years to turn earnings around. As recently as last summer Ratos made a previously agreed capital contribution. We have invested a lot of work in the company, but the conclusion in the current situation is unfortunately that conditions do not exist to reverse the trend," Magnus Agervald continues.

"Ratos has a responsibility also towards its shareholders, and after careful appraisal of the situation we have come to the conclusion that it would not be responsible to continue contributing capital in this position. It is a difficult decision that we have carefully considered," says Jonas Wiström, Chairman of the Board of Ratos.

On 31 December 2016, Ratos wrote down the consolidated book value in GS-Hydro by SEK 160m to SEK 0. The consolidated book value of GS-Hydro amounts to SEK -64m as per 30 June 2017.

The bankruptcy estate's administrator, who will be appointed in connection with the commencement of bankruptcy proceedings for GS-Hydro Holding Oy and GS-Hydro Oy, will provide more information about the proceedings within the scope of his authority.

GS-Hydro was acquired in 2001 in conjunction with the acquisition of Atle. Today, GS-Hydro has approximately 600 employees in 17 countries. In 2016, sales amounted to EUR 93,7m and operating loss (EBITA) to EUR -15,8m.

For questions, please contact:
Magnus Agervald, CEO, +46 8 700 17 00
Helene Gustafsson, Head of IR and Press, +46 8 700 17 98

Financial calendar from Ratos:
Interim report January-September 2017      14 November 2017
Year-end report 2017                                   16 February 2018
Interim report January-March 2018              3 May 2018
Interim report January-June 2018                17 August 2018
Interim report January-September 2018       25 October 2018

Ratos is an investment company that owns and develops unlisted medium-sized companies in the Nordic countries. Our goal as an active owner is to contribute to long-term and sustainable business development in the companies we invest in and to make value-generating transactions. Ratos's portfolio consists of 16 medium-sized Nordic companies and the largest segments in terms of sales are Industrials, Consumer goods/Commerce and Construction. Ratos is listed on Nasdaq Stockholm and has a total of approximately 14,000 employees.