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Successful financing and acquisitions of Solyne and Greenworking

After a successful financing round in December, the acquisitions of Solyne and Greenworking speed up the group’s growth strategy

House of HR, the European group of HR service providers, is strengthening its position on the French and Dutch market through acquisitions by two of its companies. French Abylsen is acquiring Greenworking, and Dutch Continu Professionals is taking over Solyne. Both acquisitions are in line with House of HR’s ambitions to further reinforce its leading position in the specialized European HRindustry. In December 2020 House of HR successfully finalized a 200 million euro senior subordinated note emission, putting the group in pole position for further acquisitions in 2021. Meanwhile, the group merged its two German companies TIMEPARTNER and ZAQUENSIS to become one of the largest HR-firms in Germany.

House of HR is known for its strong growth figures and plans. It does so both by internal organic growth through its 9 operating companies, but also by developing digital offerings, and by acquiring selective HR companies active in specialized domains.

To realize its growth ambitions, House of HR managed in December 2020 to reinforce its capital base through a highly successful emission of 200 million euro senior subordinated notes. This financing is reinforcing the strong liquidity position of the group, and will be used to continue the group's growth strategy. Rika Coppens, CEO of House of HR: ‘the appetite on the capital market for our debt instruments proves how trustworthy House of HR is. This is due to our strong focus on specialization and niche markets, our decentralized business model and our continuous efforts to deliver best-in-class services. Thanks to the above, we dare to say we have endured the crisis better than many other players on the HR-market.’

Two acquisitions underpin the group’s growth plans. On the one hand, House of HR’s French engineering company Abylsen acquired Paris-based Greenworking. This is a consultancy firm active in the ‘new ways of working’ market. It consists of six segments grouped in three different business units: consulting (awareness of specific topics, transformation implementation), animation (workshops, seminars, trainings) and digital (e-learning, implementation of personalized surveys). By its services, mainly focusing on French blue chip companies, Greenworking is adding value in the field of teleworking, work-life balance, leadership, digital change and social responsibility. Certainly in hard economic times, these topics are on the radar more than ever, making the take-over a future-proof investment. In 2019, Greenworking realized a turnover of 5 million euros and a strong profitability given its niche focus. It was founded in 2010 and today has 35 employees. Abylsen is acquiring the majority of the shares, the remaining ones staying in the hands of founders Olivier Brun and Cécilia Durieu and four managers. Greenworking offers Abylsen the opportunity to further grow in this specialized niche consultancy market. CEO Florian Massaux of Abylsen is excited with the acquisition: 'Greenworking is active in the field of teleworking, which has become a very hot topic and a real challenge for many companies since the Covid-crisis. We will learn a lot from Greenworking and are looking forward to offering their knowledge and services to our customers.'

The second acquisition was realized by the Dutch company Continu Professionals earlier in January: Continu Professionals acquired Solyne. Solyne consists of the brands Solyne Interim Professionals, Solyne Industrie and Solyne Direct. The different Solyne brands are all active in the engineering and consulting business, providing expert secondment in infrastructure and industry. Solyne is a project agency, helping mainly governmental and public bodies all-over the Netherlands with project consultancy from beginning to end. With its internal staff of 30 people, it delivers work to some 240 highly specialized white collars, all active in construction, urban development, cultivation and transportation, mechanical and electrical engineering, energy and industry. In 2019, Solyne, founded in 2009, realized a turnover of 20 million euros with outstanding profit performance. Continu Professionals acquires 100 % of the shares. The founders Jasper Kuiper and Bas van Eenennaam will reinvest in House of HR. The acquisition strengthens Continu Professionals’ and House of HR’s footprint in the public and governmental sector. Seth Winterscheidt, Continu Professionals’ CEO, comments on the acquisition: ‘Solyne offers a vast amount of valuable relations with employers and employees in a niche market. This fourth take-over in two years emphasizes our ongoing strategic ‘buy-and-build’ growth plans. This is now visualized by the rebranding of all Continu brands into ‘Continu Professionals’.

These two acquisitions emphasize House of HR’s further focus on specialized niche markets in the HRindustry. Together, the two companies add 25 million euros turnover to the overall portfolio of operating companies within the House of HR group.

Earlier this month, House of HR announced it is merging its two German companies TIMEPARTNER and ZAQUENSIS, in order to prepare its German activities for further investments in digital, IT and new acquisitions, and to underpin the specialized and niche approach. The new German group aims at becoming one of the three largest recruiting and talent solution firms in Germany. 

More info?
See the websites of the new acquisitions: www.solyne.nl and www.greenworking.fr.

Questions? An interview with House of HR CEO Rika Coppens?
Aart De Zitter, managing partner BeSpoken, PR-partner House of HR, +46 725 890 972, aart [at] bespoken.be
Victoria Hemelaer, CMO House of HR, +32 492 97 35 50, victoria.hemelaer [at] houseofhr.com

About House of HR
House of HR is a leading European services group active in the world of human resources (HR). Having its headquarters in Roeselare, Belgium, the group consists of nine companies and 38 brands, all focusing on temporary employment (with special attention to ‘temporary to permanent’), fixed recruitment, recruitment of specialized profiles (such as engineers, consultants, workers), and digital recruitment. In 2019, House of HR realized a consolidated turnover of 1,8 billion euros and an EBITDA of 220 million euros. De group is providing work to 47.000 people, and counts 3.400 employees spread over 590 offices. These offices serve both small, medium-sized and large companies all over Europe. House of HR is a ‘boutique multinational’ with a strong emphasis on entrepeneurship, digitalisation and innovation.