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Thule acquires Pewag, a leading global supplier of snow chains


Malmö, March 31st, 2006 - Thule, the world leader in Sports Utility Transportation, announces the acquisition of Pewag Schneeketten Group, the Austrian based leading supplier of snow chains. Pewag offers snow chains for passenger cars and for professional use and is part of the family owned Pewag Group that also supplies chains for industrial such as tire protection and lifting gears. Pewag’s snow chain business has annual net sales of € 48 M and employs 325 employees at 7 sales and production sites in Europe and North America. The deal is conditional upon approval of anti trust authorities in different European countries.

“The acquisition more than doubles the size of our current snow chains portfolio with the help of Pewag’s strong market positions for example in Austria”, comments Anders Pettersson, CEO and President of the Thule Group. “We have seen good organic growth rates during the past years triggered by intensive product development, broad distribution and strong brands”, adds Anders Pettersson. “Combining Pewag with Thule’s König branded snow chain operations will create a global player for snow chains which fully supports our vision of providing transportation solutions for active customers around the world wanting to transport their gear by a vehicle safely, easily and in style”, concludes Anders Pettersson.

“We want to concentrate on industrial applications for chains, thus Thule was the ideal partner to develop further our portfolio of snow chains for passenger cars and professional applications”, says Ägyd Pengg, owner of the Pewag Group. “Both companies share the same vision of providing first class products on a global scale and Thule has the reputation of being a responsible employer”, adds Ägyd Pengg.

The Thule growth strategy
Thule works on the market for sports utility transportation which is driven by a stable underlying growth trend. The Group’s ambition is to double its size from currently 3 billion SEK in sales until 2007 through a combination of organic and acquired growth in product segments that enhance the Thule core businesses of car accessories, trailers and snow chains. The acquisition of Pewag is the Group’s fifth one since early 2004 after having integrated the US American recreational trailer manufacturer C&C Trailers and the Italian based international snow chains producer König S.p.A early 2004. Early
2005 Thule acquired the Swedish horse trailer manufacturer Star Industrier and in June Omnistor Accessories NV, the leading supplier of accessories for motor homes and caravans.

About Thule
The Thule Group is the world leader within Sports Utililty Transportation delivering transportation solutions for active families and outdoor enthusiasts wanting to transport their equipment by vehicles safely, easily and in style. The product portfolio comprises load carriers for cars such as rooftop boxes, roof rails and bike carriers. Additionally, the company offers snow chains, trailers as well as accessories for motor homes and caravans. Thule has 2,300 employees at over 20 production and sales units on all major car markets in North America, Europe, Africa and Asia. Sales in 2005 amounted to SEK 3.2 billion (approx € 345 M). Thule AB is based in Malmö, Sweden, and majority owned by the UK-based private equity firm Candover. More information at

About Pewag
Pewag was founded in 1786 and is today one of three leading global suppliers of snow chains. The Pewag Group is family owned and based in Klagenfurt, Austria. Its product portfolio comprises snow chains as well as chains for industrial use, tire protection, lifting gear, elevator chains among others. More information at


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