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The takeover of GRAEFF, a container manufacturer, by Losberger GmbH has been completed

01/08/12

As of August 1, 2012, Losberger will continue the business under the name of GRAEFF Container GmbH

 

  • Christopher Seagon, the insolvency administrator with responsibility for GRAEFF, and Berndt Zoepffel, managing director of Losberger GmbH, have satisfied all the outstanding conditions
  • As of August 1, 2012, Losberger will continue the business under the name of GRAEFF Container GmbH
  • This means that after only five months, Christopher Seagon has succeeded in securing the future of both sites and of jobs

Mannheim, July 31, 2012 The takeover by Losber­ger GmbH of the assets of the insolvent company of GRAEFF Container und Hallenbau GmbH in Mannheim has been completed. The conditions which were still outstanding following the signing of the purchase contract by Berndt Zoepffel, managing director of Losberger GmbH, for example the agreements with leasing companies, the approval by the Federal Cartel Office, and payment of the purchase price, have now been met, according to Christopher Seagon, the lawyer and insolvency administrator for GRAEFF. As of August 1, 2012, Losberger will continue GRAEFF's operational business with all the main jobs under the name of GRAEFF Container GmbH.

Consequently, only five months after the application for insolvency was filed, GRAEFF's future is finally secured. Christopher Seagon expressed his thanks to all the parties involved in the quick finding of a solution, and wished the new investor and GRAEFF's employees all the best for the future: "Banks, leasing companies, suppliers and employees have negotiated the fulfilment of the contract in committed and targeted ways with the purchaser and, in this way, contributed to the positive overall result," he said. This, he added, is why he is optimistic about the company's positive development.

 

The background

On March 2, 2012, GRAEFF Container und Hallenbau GmbH from Mannheim had filed an application for insolvency, on the grounds of illiquidity, at the Mannheim District Court. The insolvency court appointed, first on a temporary basis, and on June 1, 2012, on a permanent basis, the Heidelberg lawyer Christopher Seagon as the insolvency administrator.

As early as the preliminary insolvency proceedings, and following intensive discussions, primarily with the sub-contractors and customers, Mr Seagon succeeded in stabilising business operations and continuing them without any restrictions. In doing this, he was able to bring about the pre-conditions for a structured investor process. GRAEFF has potential for expansion, the customers are continuing to place orders despite the application for insolvency, and the company, in addition to its competency in making containers, has a stock of several thousand containers which are hired out and cover an extremely wide range of requirements, so there was a high level of interest on the part of potential investors.

During the investor process which was instigated by Mr. Seagon, Losberger GmbH prevailed thanks to its most convincing overall concept. As a result of the purchase contract which was signed with Losberger in early June, the insolvency administrator was able to secure the future of the sites in Mannheim and Lübars (Saxony-Anhalt) and also the essential jobs. During the investor process, Mr Seagon was supported by Allert & Co. GmbH, the Mannheim-based consultants.


GRAEFF:

GRAEFF Container und Hallenbau GmbH is a medium-sized company which has been located in Mannheim since it was founded almost 50 years ago. Using prefabricated parts, the company manufactures steel halls and containers as used for many purposes in industry and commerce, crafts and by local authorities. The ongoing adaptation of the modules to the latest standards of construction ensures that manufacture and delivery is state of the art in every respect. In addition to the site in Mann­heim, GRAEFF has a manufacturing facility in Lübars (Saxony-Anhalt). National sales offices in all of Germany's important economic regions as well as international representatives ensure that the customers can be advised and looked after where they are based. At the time the application for insolvency was filed, the company was employing 85 staff of its own, with around 80 self-employed sub-contractors. In 2011 the annual turnover was approximately 48 million Euros. According to the management, the rapid growth in turnover in previous years had led to liquidity shortages which could no longer be financed. The firm's founder, Heiner Graeff, passed away in the spring of 2011.