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LPA-CGR avocats assisted FCDE in the sale of its equity stake in Weyou to EMZ Partners

Paris, 17 October 2019

LPA-CGR avocats assisted FCDE in the sale of its equity stake in Weyou to EMZ Partners. Romuald Gadrat, Weyou’s incumbent Chairman, is reinvesting alongside EMZ. Since 2015, FCDE has invested a total of nearly €16 million in Weyou’s equity to secure its independence and support its strong growth path.

Founded in 2000, Weyou is a key player in the organisation of medium-sized professional exhibitions in France. With its 18 BtoB exhibitions in Paris and Cannes, more than 3,000 exhibitors and 200,000 visitors, and the launch of one to two exhibitions per year, Weyou is now one of the most dynamic companies in its sector. Weyou has a portfolio of exhibitions that are leaders in their respective industries, including Heavent Paris, Heavent Meetings, Workspace, Workplace Meetings, Marketing & CRM Meetings, IT Meetings, Educatec, E-Marketing & Stratégie Clients, and Security Meetings. In five years, Weyou has become the leading organiser of “one-to-one” exhibitions under the “Meetings” brand.

Weyou is the result of the spin-off of the UK group Tarsus Group Plc in September 2015, led by the incumbent Chairman, Romuald Gadrat, and supported by FCDE. Since it first became a shareholder, FCDE has invested a total of nearly €16 million in Weyou’s equity to secure its independence and support its strong growth path: since 2014, Weyou’s revenue has grown organically by an average of 18% per year, supported by the development of the “Meetings” exhibitions and the very good performance of the traditional exhibitions.

After having achieved an IRR of 72% on the first transaction (2015-2017), FCDE achieved an IRR of 89% on this second transaction (2017-2019), thereby demonstrating the significant operational and strategic value creation.

The team of LPA-CGR that assisted FCDE was composed of Philippe Raybaud (partner) and Wyssam Mansour (associate), with the assistance of Mathieu Selva-Roudon (partner) on tax matters.

The following law firms were also involved in this transaction:

  • Desfilis avocats (M&A) and Cazals Manzo Pichot (tax) assisted EMZ Partners;
  • Racine (M&A) and Arsène Taxand (tax) assisted WeYou.