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This archived content is from Mary Wilkins’ sewing and quilting message board “Sew What’s New,” which was retired in August 2007. It is being provided by “Sew What’s Up,” which serves as the new home for many members of “Sew What’s New.”
From: wghmch
Date: 12-12-2005, 03:31 PM (1 of 8)
From: VSM Group
Date: 12/12/2005 9:27:46 AM

Subject: Industri Kapital Sells VSM Group to Affiliates of Kohlberg

Management IV, L.L.C.

Industri Kapital Sells VSM Group to Affiliates of Kohlberg Management

IV, L.L.C.

Industri Kapital ("IK") and affiliates of Kohlberg Management IV, L.L.C.("Kohlberg"), have signed an agreement on the sale of VSM Group Holding AB ("VSM"), a leading supplier of high end consumer sewing machines and accessories under the Husqvarna Viking and Pfaff brands. Affiliates of Kohlberg already control the well known Singer brand of household sewing
machines. The transaction will be made by a holding company, to be called SVP Holdings, reflecting its ownership of the Singer, Viking and Pfaff brands.

Don Fletcher, who joined Singer following Kohlberg's investment in September 2004, will become CEO and President of SVP Holdings. The executive management team of SVP Holdings will include representatives from both VSM and Singer. Mr. Jörgen Johansson, the current CEO of VSM, will become a senior advisor and member of the Board of Directors of SVP Holdings.

Based in Sweden, VSM markets and sells advanced sewing machines, overlocks and accessories for creative sewing worldwide. With its global brands, VSM is the leader in the premium segments of its industry. The group has 2,000 employees, manufacturing facilities in Sweden and the Czech Republic, 16 sales companies and distributors in 57 countries with the world's largest dealer network consisting of some 4,100 sales-points. VSM has annual sales of 240 million euro.

Following IK's acquisition of VSM from Electrolux in April 1997, IK, in close co-operation with management, transformed VSM into a leading player in the high-end segment of the sewing machine industry. During IK's ownership the company has launched a number of strategic initiatives, including improving the product range, focusing on the high-end embroidery segment and developing after-market sales of accessories and software, whilst continuously enhancing the professional dealer network. Sales have more than doubled and profits have almost trebled.

Kim Wahl, Partner at Industri Kapital, commented: "This investment demonstrates our dedication to building best-in-class companies and improving operational performance. We have worked alongside a strong and dedicated management team to adapt the business to a niche where
sewing is more of a hobby than a necessity. We have grown the company both organically and through the strategic add-on acquisition of Pfaff and we have ensured that VSM's dealer network is the strongest in the industry".

Jörgen Johansson, CEO of VSM, commented: "As the world leader in creative sewing we are pleased to be acquired by affiliates of Kohlberg,which, like IK, have a strong appreciation of our specialized business and organizational culture. With their support, we are eager to continue our strategy of working with our dealers to deliver a superior creative sewing experience to our customers around the world. We are confident that the combination within SVP will allow us to utilize our resources in a much more efficient manner, furthering our ability to focus on the continued innovation necessary to keep the world sewing."

Don Fletcher, CEO of Singer, commented: "I'm delighted at the prospect
of bringing VSM under the SVP umbrella. VSM's highly advanced product development capabilities and its unsurpassed presence in the premium segment of the consumer sewing industry will be a perfect complement to our existing business, and I fully support the Company's growth strategy. Together, our two businesses will be better positioned to respond to the needs of consumers worldwide."

The transaction is subject to regulatory approvals.

Industri Kapital was advised by UBS, Advokatfirman Vinge and PricewaterhouseCoopers.


Industri Kapital:

Kim Wahl, Partner

Phone: +47 23 11 46 57

Anne Holm Rannaleet, Partner & Information Director

Phone +46 8 678 9550


Jörgen Johansson, CEO

Phone: +46 36 14 62 28


Evan Wildstein, Kohlberg

Phone: +1 (914) 241-7430


Don Fletcher, CEO

Phone: +1 (615) 280-5205


VSM develops, produces, markets and sells home sewing machines and accessories which provide consumers worldwide with the potential to experience the joy of creative sewing. With its global brands, Husqvarna Viking and Pfaff, the company is one of the world's leading players in the industry. It sells some 500,000 sewing machines annually corresponding to a turnover of SEK 2.2 billion. The Group has around 2,000 employees, of whom 500 are based in Sweden. The company is certified in accordance with the international quality and environmental management systems ISO 9001 and ISO 14001.

For further information on VSM:
User: wghmch
Member since: 03-04-2003
Total posts: 249
From: pretnichols
Date: 12-12-2005, 03:36 PM (2 of 8)
Okay, I read this, but what are your thoughts on this? I'm in the market for a new machine and now I don't know what to do. I know Singer had been bad for a few years and were making a comeback. I was leading toward the Viking brand.

Oh well, guess I'll wait and see what you all have to say.

Thanks for posting this and keeping us informed.


So little time, sew much to do...........
User: pretnichols
Member since: 10-16-2005
Total posts: 342
From: plrlegal
Date: 12-12-2005, 05:23 PM (3 of 8)
Peggy the only thing I can tell you is that the machines that have the Singer name on them that you see at Wal-Mart, Costco, Sam's, Service Merchandise, etc. are not the same machines that are sold by the Singer dealers. I know because I own 2 that have been purchased from a reputable Singer dealer in the Oklahoma City area and they in no way look like or resemble the "plastic" machines with the Singer name on them at Wal-Mart, K-mart, etc. I have not had a problem with either machine. I finally wore my Singer serger out simply from 8 or 9 years of almost constant use from August to December every year sewing every kind of costume fabric you can imagine.

User: plrlegal
Member since: 05-19-2001
Total posts: 318
From: Tom Land
Date: 12-12-2005, 08:01 PM (4 of 8)
We were told 6 months ago that this was in the works. It will have no bearing on Pfaff, Viking, White, or Singer. All four are still independant companys. When this company bought Singer a couple of years ago they really turned the quality around. Keep in mind that this investment company bought VSM to make a profit. If anything they will improve things. Just as Viking's quality greatly improved after Husqvarna sold them 15 years ago we expect it to improve even more. I don't know how they can improve Pfaff's quality but maybe they'll start advertising it more. The previous owners concentrated are trying to make Viking a household name even though they recognized Pfaff as their premier Brand. White could use alot of help but I doubt we'll see it.
Again, this company was the best thing that ever happened to Singer. I'll bet it holds true for the VSM family.
Have fun or don't do it, Tom
User: Tom Land
Member since: 09-21-2005
Total posts: 514
From: debsews
Date: 12-12-2005, 08:55 PM (5 of 8)
Well I love my Vikings so I hope they only get better. Don't know anything about the other brands but I do agree that the machines you get at WalMart aren't the same as you'd get from a dealer. I would never spend good money for a machine and not get dealer support. It just isn't worth it in the long run. I love my Viking dealer and they service my machine and are there if I need help on the phone. Do your own research and check with the dealers for preowned machines. They are serviced and ready for someone to take home and use. They have most likely been the dealer the first time around and so know the machine very well. It's a good way to get a better machine without paying new prices.
User: debsews
Member since: 09-16-2005
Total posts: 254
From: Kylnne2
Date: 12-13-2005, 03:55 AM (6 of 8)
It will be interesting to see if any changes will be made with Singer and the other companies. I agree about the machines sold at Walmart not being the same as the top of the line machines at dealers but the Singer Quantum 9900's that were sold at the dealers in the past year are now sold at Hancocks along with some lower line New Homes. IMO I do feel if one likes a model and it is a good machine it shouldn't matter what brand name is on it. Janome makes so many machines now for different companies like HuskyStar for Viking plus the Viking Mega Quilter, Pfaff Grand Quilter (lovely machine) Kenmores for Sears and some Elna's. Remember that years back some Japanese made machines were basically the same but had different brand names on them. It's always nice to have sites like this too, where there are techs on the threads that let us know what's under the hood of certain machines and how or where the machines are made.
User: Kylnne2
Member since: 07-10-2004
Total posts: 629
From: plrlegal
Date: 12-31-2005, 03:35 PM (7 of 8)
Tom do you know if the patent on the Pfaff IDF has been sold to any other companies yet?

User: plrlegal
Member since: 05-19-2001
Total posts: 318
From: Tom Land
Date: 12-31-2005, 03:53 PM (8 of 8)
Pfaff's patent has expired. It is now fair game for anyone. To date only one company has put it on one of their models and it is not as elaborate or effective as Pfaffs IDF. This is an expensive mechanism to install in a manner that works well. I expect we will see more comapanies install similar systems but not the full system. A poorly designed system will not only perform poorly but will tend to have problems. I have already heard some "Janome only" dealers advise their customers not to purchase that machine until they get the "bugs" out.
Have fun or don't do it, Tom
User: Tom Land
Member since: 09-21-2005
Total posts: 514
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