Chinese eye up Philips' domestic appliances

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Will Philips' Senseo and Airfryer appliances fall into Chinese hands? Three Chinese buyers are dominating the sale of Philips' domestic appliances department. However, other parties have also shown interest. 

 

Three billion euros

Three players are still in the running to take over the domestic appliances department of Philips, according to Dutch newspaper Het Financieele Dagblad. All three bid over three billion euros on the Dutch manufacturer's irons, Senseo coffee machines, Airfryers and more. The candidate buyers are Chinese investor groups Hillhouse Capital, CDH Investments and Citic Capital. The latter is also linked to the Chinese state-owned electronics holding company TCL.

 

Other acquisition candidates have presented themselves, including major Western investors such as CVC, Apollo and Bain, but they would not have been held to the next round. They may still get the opportunity to raise their bid or join one of the Chinese bidders. Philips does keep its options open: if the sale does not produce the desired result, the domestic appliances department can be taken to the stock exchange.

 

Philips' domestic appliances department has been on the market since the beginning of 2020, but due to the Covid-19 pandemic, they put the sale temporarily on hold. The selling process got relaunched this autumn. The department employs 6,000 people, working at the R&D department or head office located in the Netherlands, or in Asia, where most of the production facilities are based. Annual revenue is expected to be 2.3 billion euros, with a gross profit of around 260 million euros.