Carlyle launches Farmfront

DBAG snaps up majority in ProMik.

Irrigation is our opening topic this morning as Carlyle announces the launch of Farmfront Group, with the combination of Ocmis Group, Irrimec, Otech and RKD. The private equity firm says that the combo will be Europe’s largest mechanical irrigation company.

Then we have a deal in the world of testing and programming with Deutsche Beteiligungs agreeing to acquire a majority stake in ProMik Programmiersysteme für die Mikroelektronik.

We then take a look at a corporate carve-out, as Inflexion Private Equity announces a strategic investment in Aosphere, a legal and compliance data subscription company.


Starting my first day back after a holiday with a bit of agriculture. Carlyle announced the launch of Farmfront Group, a global platform of irrigation providers.

Farmfront’s formation follows Carlyle’s acquisition of Ocmis Group in 2022 and the recent acquisitions of Irrimec, Otech and RKD, three European irrigation firms.

RKD and Irrimec, which includes Otech in France, will combine with Ocmis. Together, they will operate as a global platform of irrigation providers, according to a release.

Headquartered in Milan, Farmfront has six manufacturing sites in Italy, Spain and France, and combined turnover of over €200 million in 2022.

“Farmfront Group has been established to provide farmers with the complete irrigation solutions they need,” said Filippo Penatti, managing director of Carlyle Europe Partners advisory team. “By joining these firms together and establishing a coordinated commercial, marketing, and supply platform, we have created a strong runway for growth across the group.”

For those looking for more reading on irrigation and water management, take a look at my story about Sun European Partners’ acquisition of MegaGroup.

Testing 1, 2, 3

Moving to a bit of programming. Deutsche Beteiligungs (DBAG) has agreed to acquire a majority stake in ProMik Programmiersysteme für die Mikroelektronik, a global programming and testing service provider, from its founding family.

Nuremberg, Germany-based ProMik provides services for series production in the electronics industry.

ProMik’s founding family will retain a minority ownership.

“We are seeing interesting opportunities for strategic acquisitions in this market,” said Jannick Hunecke, a member of DBAG’s board of management. “This is where we can leverage our extensive M&A experience.”

Alexander Rosenberger and Jens Rosenberger, members of the founding family, will remain with ProMik as CTO and CMO, respectively.

Carving out 

Yesterday, my colleague Irien Joseph reported on Inflexion’s strategic investment in Aosphere, a legal and compliance data subscription company, alongside A&O and Endicott Capital.

Aosphere will become a standalone entity with A&O retaining a minority stake in the company it created in 2002. Inflexion will invest in Aosphere via its Partnership Capital II fund.

“These corporate/private equity partnerships [are] an exciting and growing specialism,” said David Whileman, head of Partnership Capital funds. “This will be our third in less than three years and I have no doubt it will be one of the most talked about spaces for the next three. Corporates are increasingly approaching us around the flexibility of retaining a significant or even majority ongoing interest in their successful, non-core activities whilst backing their independence with significant private equity resources.”

I caught up with Whileman a while back about minority investing and Partnership Capital’s investment strategy. You can read my interview with Whileman here.