In a move that figures to diversify its portfolio, Paris-based electrical products distributor Rexel announced May 30 it will acquire Wasco, an HVAC distributor based in Apeldoorn, Netherlands. The transaction is valued at €485 ($518) million — 9.2 times Wasco’s EBITDA — and is expected to close in the second half of 2023, according to a news release.
Founded in 1970, Wasco is a distributor of heating, ventilation, air-conditioning and sanitary equipment. The company operates 35 branches and two distribution centers across the Netherlands. Wasco is owned by Dutch private equity firm Gilde Equity Management.
This acquisition will allow Rexel to benefit from markets that are at the forefront of Europe’s energy transition, including the Dutch HVAC market, as well as photovoltaic solutions, industrial automation and EV charging solutions, according to the release. Wasco will also double Rexel’s size in the Netherlands.
“With the acquisition of Wasco, we are totally in line with our strategy aiming at seizing electrification and energy transition opportunities,” Rexel CEO Guillaume Texier said in the release. “It’s also fully consistent with our purpose, ‘Electrifying solutions that make a sustainable future possible.’ The Netherlands is one of the most exciting European markets from an electrification perspective, benefitting from a fast-paced transition from gas, driven by incentives and regulations, notably the ban on gas boilers both in new build and renovation.
“Wasco is ideally positioned to be an active player in this transition; it is also best-in-class in terms of digitalization,” Texier added. “We are excited to start working with the Wasco teams to unleash the great opportunities that the association of both companies in the Netherlands will create.”
The acquisition remains subject to customary closing conditions, according to the release.
Wasco is the fourth acquisition of 2023 for Rexel, which has also acquired Buckles-Smith Electric Company, Lineman’s Testing Laboratories and Teche Electric Supply this year. Rexel posted sales of €18.7 billion ($22.4 billion) in 2022.
Rexel’s North American subsidiaries, Rexel USA and Rexel Canada, combined to rank at No. 4 on MDM’s Top Electrical, Data & Security Distributors list in 2022.