Argand Partners, LP (“Argand”), the New York- and San Francisco Bay Area-based private equity firm, today announced that it has entered into an agreement to acquire Cherry GmbH (“Cherry”).
Cherry is the world’s leading global manufacturer of high precision keyboard switch technology for gaming and professional use computing peripheral products. The company designs and manufactures premium key switches for mechanical keyboards, branded gaming peripherals, computer input devices (including mice and headsets), and products for security, point of sale and e-Health applications. Founded in the U.S. in 1953, Cherry pioneered the mechanical keyboard switch. The company’s CHERRY MX switches are considered the industry gold standard in keyboard switch technology. Cherry’s products are engineered to maximize performance, ergonomics, durability and precision. The Cherry brand is used by a diverse customer base worldwide, including gaming professionals and enthusiasts, and corporates and governments in the defense, healthcare, finance and retail sectors. Headquartered in Auerbach, Germany, Cherry has a reputation for “Made-in-Germany” quality, performance and reliability. Cherry retains the Blue Angel ecolabel for environmentally friendly product design and operates across a global footprint of state-of-the-art manufacturing facilities and corporate offices in Europe, Asia, and the U.S.
Rolf Unterberger, Cherry’s Chief Executive Officer, said, “We are proud of Cherry’s heritage and our leading position in the keyboard switch industry. Argand is an excellent fit for our firm and people. We are excited to leverage the resources and expertise of Argand during our next phase of growth, as we continue to invest in cutting-edge technology to support the growth of esports.”
Tariq Osman, Partner and Senior Managing Director at Argand, added, “Cherry is a world-class company and an innovator in its industry. We were attracted to its market-leading position within the keyboard switch and personal computer peripherals markets. We believe the company is supported by long-term growth trends and in particular, could benefit from current ‘stay-at-home’ policies and social distancing trends which are accelerating the adoption of esports and contributing to strong growth in the global video gaming market. We look forward to partnering with Cherry’s management team to further build upon its leadership position to pursue an accelerated global growth strategy which will include the near term launch of Cherry’s highly anticipated Viola mechanical keyboard switch solutions.”
The transaction is subject to customary closing conditions and regulatory approvals.
The acquisition is supported by a loan facility provided by Hayfin Capital Management. Hengeler Mueller acted as lead legal counsel to Argand, supported by Winston & Strawn LLP for the USA, Jun He LLP for China, and Gide Loyrette Nouel AARPI for France.
About Argand Partners
Argand Partners is a New York and San Francisco Bay Area-based middle-market private equity firm that targets market-leading industrial companies whose global growth potential is under-resourced and unrealized. Argand companies have strong market share, sustainable competitive advantages, defensive characteristics, and significant growth potential supported by secular demand trends. The firm focuses on manufacturing and business services companies with a clear U.S. nexus (headquarters, primary growth market, or majority of revenue) and often significant global operations or expansion opportunities.
Argand is a growth-oriented control investor that seeks complex, often contrarian, situations in order to buy well. The team employs a hands-on approach to partnering with management to create value across the investment lifecycle and help portfolio companies achieve their full potential as world-class, industry-leading companies.
Further information on Argand can be found on the website:
Cherry GmbH, headquartered in Auerbach in der Oberpfalz, Germany, is a leading global manufacturer of computer input devices with a focus on Office, Gaming, Industry, Security and switches for mechanical keyboards. Cherry employs approximately 400 people in production plants and corporate branches in Germany, France, UK, China and the USA. Founded in 1953, the Cherry brand is synonymous with German-quality products that are designed and developed specifically for the needs of its customers.
Further information on Cherry can be found on the websites:
For more information about Argand or the Cherry transaction, contact:
Partner & Senior Managing Director