Rochdale manufacturer expands into Italy with £6.1m acquisition

Posted by on 12 Jan 2021

Image: Rochdale manufacturer expands into Italy with £6.1m acquisition

Rochdale-based The Vita Group has stepped up its expansion into Europe with the acquisition of Italian foam manufacturer I.M.P.E. S.p.A., a wholly owned subsidiary of Natuzzi based in Naples.

Vita, which is headquartered in Middleton, is the UK’s leading provider of polyurethane foam and employs 2,700 people across Europe.

It expects the £6.1m deal to complete in the first quarter of 2021 and will enable Vita to gain an important foothold in Italy, which is the second largest furniture producing country in Europe and one of its largest furniture exporters.

Ian Robb

Speaking on behalf of The Vita Group, Group CEO Ian Robb said: “This strategic acquisition establishes a further step in our ambition to broaden and strengthen our production footprint across Europe.

“We believe this is a win-win transaction for all parties and allows Vita to gain an established foothold in this important market.

“Under The Vita Group umbrella, and with the assistance of IMPE’s experienced workforce, we look forward to further investing in new plant and equipment to allow us to increase choice, innovation and continued support to our existing and new customers, while further enhancing our presence in the Italian bedding and furniture market.”

The Naples site, which will be known as Vita Italy, will manufacture value added and differentiated polyurethane foam for the Italian furniture and bedding industry, as well as expanding the Group’s trade links with the Americas and North Africa.

The site, which has production capabilities of 20k tonnes per annum, will enable Vita to release current production in Hungary and Romania to concentrate on further expansion in Eastern Europe and the Balkans region.

The acquisition will also further strengthen its long-standing partnership with world-leading furniture manufacturer Natuzzi.

In addition to purchasing the foam plant in Naples, The Vita Group will continue to supply Natuzzi with high-quality materials, including new innovative foams for use across its global furniture portfolio.

News of the acquisition follows a successful 2020 for The Vita Group, which expanded capacity into Lithuania, Poland and Romania, which will be online in 2021. The capacity increases enable further investments into thriving new sectors, such as bedding (Bed in a Box) technology and production equipment in United Kingdom, France, Romania, and Germany.

These investments are supported with the creation of four distinct innovation centres across the Group, based in Accrington (Technical Division), Corby (Flooring Division), while the Comfort Division has invested in Lithuania (Chemistry and Formulation) and its state-of-the-art Bedding Innovation Centre in Middleton.

The Middleton Innovation Centre combines Vita’s technical expertise with the latest advanced testing equipment and systems and enables the Group to continue to deliver leading, innovative products.

Last year The Vita Group also helped manufacture 25,000 mattresses for the Nightingale hospitals in the fight against Covid-19 and is currently delivering products for medical mattresses, filters for ventilators, PPE mask inserts, and many other healthcare relate products.

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