WEINHEIM - Global technology group Freudenberg is expanding its filter business with the purchase of a majority stake in China-based Apollo Air-cleaner Co., Ltd.
The financial terms of the deal, carried out by the Freudenberg Filtration Technologies Business Group, were not disclosed with the transaction still awaiting approval from competition authorities.
Apollo is known as a major supplier of air and water filtration solutions in China, providing filtration solutions for a variety of applications such as air-conditioners, refrigerators, room air purifiers, vacuum cleaners, automobiles, kitchen facilities, humidifiers, HVAC equipment, medical purifiers, water purifiers, printers and copy machines. In 2017, it had around 1,000 employees and generated 750 million RMB in sales (approximately €96 million.
“By purchasing the majority stake in Apollo, we are strengthening our position in China’s rapidly growing market for filtration solutions,” said Dr. Mohsen Sohi, Freudenberg Group CEO.
Air and water filtration solutions are enjoying strong year-on-year growth rates, especially in China, thanks to legislation demanding stricter regulations and increased environmental awareness. Experts estimate that the global market for Apollo's products – filters for room air purifiers, decentralized ventilation systems and water treatment – will have a total value of some US$5 billion by the year 2022.
“Apollo is a great fit for Freudenberg,” added Dr. Andreas Kreuter, CEO of Freudenberg Filtration Technologies. “It is an innovative technology company that complements our own portfolio of filtration solutions for indoor air and water purification. The company also has first class production expertise and excellent networks in the industry.”
Apollo's filters are used to keep air or drinking water free of (ultra) fine particles, dangerous gases, odours and microorganisms and protect health. At its production site in Shunde, China, the company has established high standards for product quality, process efficiency and workplace safety, and is certified to ISO 9001, ISO 14001 and TS 16949.
Apollo will continue as a joint venture between Freudenberg (major shareholder) and the current sole proprietor Apollo Trading Group, Japan, under the name Freudenberg Apollo Filtration Technologies. Freudenberg Filtration Technologies said it intended to bring its current consumer filtration business into the joint venture.
“For nearly 20 years, Apollo has been offering innovative filtration solutions, improving the quality of life in China,” said Akihisa Yamamoto, CEO of Apollo Trading Group. "The global development and production network and the more extensive portfolio of technological product solutions stemming from this joint venture will primarily benefit our customers.”
Freudenberg Filtration Technologies develops and produces high-performance, energy-efficient filtration solutions. With its Viledon and micronAir global brands, the company offers customers innovative filter elements and systems for the energy and resources, hygiene and health, automobile and transport, production and building technology sectors, and for highly-specialized applications. In 2017, Freudenberg Filtration Technologies generated sales of around €423 millio0n and employed almost 2,100 people.