Linde Sells Forklift Division for $5.1 billion

Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. and Goldman Sachs Capital Partners have acquired the Kion Group lift truck division of Linde AG (Wiesbaden, Germany) for $5.1 billion. The medium-term objective of the new owners is an IPO, say spokespeople for the two New York-based, private equity organizations.

“We are utterly convinced that KKR and Goldman Sachs have the right overall concept for the group” said Professor Wolfgang Reitzle, president of the Linde’s executive board. “After carefully examining all the options, we have chosen a strong and strategically-oriented partner, who will facilitate a seamless transition and enable Kion to continue on its path towards earnings-based growth.”

The consortium will reportedly honor agreements on safeguarding locations made by the Linde executive board with employee representatives in summer 2005. Finalization of the deal will depend upon approval by government competition organizations.

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