Sovitec was Europe's leading manufacturer of glass beads used as reflective components in road marking.

The glass beads, made of recycled white glass, were primarily used as reflective component in road markings aimed at improving visibility, with the remainder used in a wide variety of applications such as a blasting medium for surface treatment and as a technical additive to polymers and coatings. At the time of our investment, Sovitec operated five plants located in Belgium, France, Spain, Germany and Argentina.

Intensive support by VE Partners was provided to the company to implement a value creation strategy aimed at reversing the loss of profitability during the years prior to our investment. The program consisted of reducing fixed costs, improving the operational strategy, harmonizing the product portfolio and developing a new sales strategy (price & client mix) with a clear focus on developing high-margin end-markets.

Sovitec’s over-indebtedness was resolved by a balance sheet restructuring, involving multiple debt-for-equity swaps and debt waivers in various jurisdictions. The organizational structure was changed to allow the various operational sites to create synergies. In parallel financial controls were improved by implementing a new IT system and new reporting formats.

The previous actions led Sovitec back to a very healthy profitability level.

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