French leisure equipment giant Trigano has acquired Italian motorhome manufacturer SEA Group.
SEA owns the McLouis, Elnagh and Mobilvetta brands, which between them sold 3200 motorhomes in 2012, generating €130 million (£106 million) in revenue. Due to weak demand in the Italian market, SEA has been running at a loss since 2006. McLouis, Elnagh and Mobilvetta motorhomes were previously sold in the UK, but the SEA Group pulled out of the market in 2009 due to a lack of demand and the weakening pound. SEA also previously owned Auto-Sleepers, having purchased it in 2005 and sold it on to management in 2009.
Trigano owns manufacturers across Europe, including Chausson in France and Auto-Trail here in the UK. It also owns Italy's biggest motorhome manufacturer, CI. In a press release the Trigano Group indicated that it was planning to put in place purchasing, manufacturing and commercial "synergies" to offset SEA's operating losses. What this means for SEA's 365 employees remains to be seen.
The deal is still awaiting clearance from the German and Italian competition authorities, and is set to result in around €15 million (£12 million) of consolidated debt added to Trigano's books. The full ramifications of this deal on Trigano's operations on the UK have yet to be made clear.
1 December, 2012