Singapore—State-owned investment company Temasek is in talks to buy Rivulus, an Israeli drip-irrigation firm. Israeli news outfit Haaretz reports that the price Temasek will be paying will be between US$450 and $500 million (approximately S$606 and $673 million).
Rivulis is the second-largest maker of drip irrigation equipment in the world.
A report says that Temasek is in the process of conducting due diligence for the acquisition of Rivulis, and while two other parties are interested in the irrigation firm, its current majority stakeholder, FIMI, is only negotiating with Temasek at present.
Temasek currently has investments in Israel, mostly with tech startups.
According to Haaretz, the acquisition could end up being very profitable for Ishay Davidi’s FIMI Opportunity Funds, Israel’s biggest private equity firm, which bought Rivulis from John Deere, an American manufacturer of farming equipment, for a net cost of US$40 million in 2014.
The following year, FIMI sold a 20 percent stake in Rivulis to Dhanna Engineering, an Indian firm, for US$34 million. And in 2017, Rivulis acquired Eurodrip, which is the fourth largest manufacturer of drip-irrigation equipment in the world, in exchange for a 25.5 percent stake in the company.
At this point, FIMI controls around 60 percent of Rivulus.
Drip-irrigation technology is currently enjoying a boost because of environmental and water wastage issues. A study predicts that the global market for drip-irrigation technology will reach US$8.5 billion by 2025. In 2019, it was at US$4.9 billion, marking a compounded annual growth of nearly 10 percent.
Noted global finance institution Goldman Sachs has been retained by FIMI for Rivulis’ sale.
In 2018 Goldman Sachs managed the sale of the world’s biggest drip-irrigation company, Netafim Ltd, to Mexico-based pipes and chemicals company Mexichem SAB de CV. Temasek had been said then to have been the leading entity for the acquisition of Netafim until the news broke out that Mexichem had won the bid to buy it.
There are currently 1,800 individuals working for Rivulis. The firm has 17 facilities and its main markets are the United States, Argentina, the Balkans, Brazil, Greece, Mexico, and Turkey.
The firm’s revenues showed an eight percent growth to $390 million in 2019. Despite the financial crisis in the key Turkish and Argentine markets from June to January of last year, the company’s earnings grew by 45 percent, and its expansion plans include a new factory in Mexico this year.
Temasek currently manages around US $232 billion in assets. The company, which began in 1974 and is headed by Singapore’s Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong’s wife, Ho Ching, as Chief Executive Officer, counts financial services, real estate, telecommunication, transportation, energy, and agriculture among its investments.
Temasek’s revenue for 2019 was US$85 billion, a seven percent increase from 2018. -/TISG