MAN Roland to Go Public

WESTMONT, IL—MAN Roland, the world’s second-largest press manufacturer, is on the verge of becoming an independent, publicly traded company.

MAN AG and Allianz Capital Partners GmbH have agreed via a letter of intent to create a joint venture to purchase MAN Roland Druckmaschinen and take it public. Under the deal, MAN AG would have 35 percent equity in the company.

Top MAN executives believe the move will allow it to sharpen its focus on providing customers with more productive ways to print.

“An independent MAN Roland will be a more responsive MAN Roland for North American printers,” notes Yves Rogivue, CEO of MAN Roland Inc. “We’ve always put our customers’ needs first. Our new independent structure will allow us to further focus our dedication to the printer in terms of advanced technology and support.”

According to Gerd Finkbeiner, CEO of MAN Roland Druckmaschinen, continuity in the management, corporate structure and MAN Roland brand names will ensure that the company maintains credibility and reliability for customers and employees.

One byproduct of the venture involves Allianz Capital Partners supporting MAN in making selective acquisitions to bolster its sheetfed, web and consumables offerings. Though the announcement didn’t mention any specifics, Allianz CEO Thomas Pütter feels the newly liberated company could “play a decisive role in the imminent consolidation of the industry.”

The move comes on the heels of what MAN Roland officials describe as a record year, including double-digit gains in web press sales and a turnaround of its sheetfed operations. The latter attained profitability for 2005 and registered a 57 percent increase in order backlog. Its North American division contributed a 41 percent increase in sheetfed press orders and a record year in web press sales.

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