Private equity firm major India Value Fund Advisors (IVFA) and former Godrej Consumer Goods’ executive Arumugham Mahendran have joined hands to buy ISS Hicare, the second-largest pesticide services company in the country, for an undisclosed amount.

VCCircle was the first to report the development in November last year. The deal size is pegged around Rs 150 crore. 

ISS Hicare operates through 52 branches in 27 cities. It serves over 1 lakh residential customers and 10,000 commercial customers with 1,500 employees and a network of franchise partners.

It was owned by ISS Facility Services India Pvt Ltd, a part of Denmark’s ISS Global.

As part of the latest transaction, IVFA’s Vikram Nirula and Haresh Chawla will join as directors on the board of the company while Mahendran will be the chairman.

Vishal Nevatia, managing partner, IVFA said, “Hicare has the brand recognition and superior product knowledge needed to take leadership in the highly underpenetrated Indian market for pest control services. This deal showcases the IVFA investment philosophy of working with entrepreneurs and management teams with the aim of building high-quality companies."

IVFA, which manages over $1.2 billion in assets, invests in mid-sized firms and has a bunch of control transactions under its belt. Last year it invested in VKL Seasoning and Trivitron.

Talking about the deal, Mahendran, chairman, Mahendran Holdings Ltd said, “Hicare is well-positioned to provide a global standard of pest control services to the Indian consumer." 

MAPE was the transaction advisor, DSK Legal was the legal advisor & PriceWaterhouseCoopers provided the accounting diligence on the deal to the acquirers.

ISS Hicare was started in 2004 by Godrej Industries and Mahendran Holdings, to provide pest control services to residential customers in Mumbai, eventually expanding to become a pan-India player serving both residential and commercial customers. Formerly known as Godrej Hicare, it was acquired by Danish multinational ISS Global in 2009 for close to Rs 100 crore. 

The ISS Group, which is a global facility services provider that includes property, cleaning, support and catering and facility management, is exiting the pest control services business. Last May it completed sale of the unit which handled markets like Australia, Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, Spain and Switzerland to Anticimex. At present it manages pest control services business only in emerging markets. 

(Edited by Joby Puthuparampil Johnson)

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