UK- based global asset management firm Oaktree Capital Management acquired 40% stake in the Italian operator of theme and scientific parks Costa Edutainment in a deal of €40 M. Further details of the deal were not disclosed. The agreement provides for the possibility of further investments by Oaktree in order to create a reference player on the European scene, also through the acquisition of new parks and structures on national and international territory. Financial advisor to Costa Edutainment was SORTIS’s partner in the Globalscope M&A advisors network Palladio Corporate Finance.
Costa Edutainment Group is the Italian leader in theme parks and scientific parks. The company manages 11 accommodation facilities with a total area of 470,000 sq. m and has 2.8 million visitors per year. Some of Costa’s parks include the Aquarium of Genoa and those of Livorno and Cattolica, as well as the Romagna theme parks – Italia Miniatura, Oltremare and Aquafan, the Bioparco di Roma and a structure on the island of Malta. For 2018, the company reached a turnover of €60.2 M with €10 M EBITDA and net financial debt of €33.6 M.
With the transaction, Costa Edutainment plans to grow further and take the challenge to expand not only on the Italian market but internationally as well. Giuseppe Costa, Chairman of Costa Edutainment, commented: “In Oaktree we found an important new partner that will allow us to embark on a path of further growth aimed not only at consolidating our position in Italy but above all at seizing the challenges of an international market with the appropriate resources”.
Oaktree Capital Management is a UK-based subsidiary of the American global asset management firm specializing in alternative investment strategies. The company was founded in 1995 and its clients are 71 of the 100 largest U.S. pension plans, more than 390 corporations around the world, 38 of the 50 primary state retirement plans in the United States, over 330 endowments and foundations globally, and over 15 sovereign wealth funds. Oaktree operates around $119 Bn of assets under management and has 950 employees in more than 12 locations worldwide including USA, UK, Paris, Frankfurt, Dubai, Hong Kong, and Singapore.