Pioneer Newsletter Q3 - 2020

Investing in times of COVID-19: can it work? Warren Buffet's strategy consists in finding a company with long-term success that has a clear and sustainable business model, good management and a strong market position.

This is exactly where CEDES AG stands; capiton AG, a private equity investor with a sense of responsibility and a focus on SMEs, has recognized this potential. As a result, capiton teamed up with the management led by the CEDES CEO to buy the company out of the ASSA ABLOY Group.

ASSA ABLOY's Group CEO Nico Delvaux says: "I find it very satisfying that with capiton AG, CEDES and its employees and customers gain a committed long-term investor, creating new opportunities for the future and I wish them every success."

The press release reads as follows: "CEDES is happy to expand their business based on the existing product portfolio and a series of new, recently launched products. This is the start of an exciting journey towards the future for the company and its employees. The industrialization of most new products developed within the current innovation boost will be completed by 2021".

Indeed, the buyout opens up interesting new opportunities for the next growth phase. First and foremost, capiton AG and the CEDES management make for a completely independent and neutral ownership, able to serve all customers in a competitively neutral way. Any reservations are now lifted and new potential is released. Moreover, thanks to its extensive network, capiton AG offers direct access to many important customers. CEDES’ growth is not only organic. capiton AG will also help evaluate suitable acquisitions, offering additional potential for accelerated growth. As a global player and a recognized leader in innovation and quality, the CEDES Group creates added value and a competitive edge for customers through the standard as well as brand new, leading-edge products. Moreover, the CEDES branch in Changshu provides excellent conditions for cost-effective production, allowing CEDES to offer the highest quality at a fair price.

What impact will the corona crisis have on CEDES? According to the forecast of the Swiss Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO), the real gross domestic product (GDP) of Switzerland will fall by 5 percent in 2020 compared to the previous year. Regardless of this trend, CEDES remains well-equipped to survive the coronavirus pandemic thanks to the strong market position based on contactless optical sensors and, above all, the new product portfolio. Despite a more reserved order behavior of our customers, we are expecting to match the last year's results in 2020.

CEDES was founded in 1986 and, having just “re-invented” itself, is now more robust than ever. The company has made massive investments in the new product portfolio over the past few years and was well prepared for the coronavirus crisis. With their own significant financial contribution to the takeover, the management demonstrated a strong belief in the future of their company. Also during the time with ASSA ABLOY, we were able to strengthen CEDES through the implementation of professional tools and optimized processes, which made us fit for the future. 

A heartfelt thank you to all our loyal customers. We are looking forward to a common future defined by success and good health. 

Christian-Erik Thöny

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