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Victoria opens war chest and expects ‘several’ more deals soon  

war chestShareholders in Victoria have been told to expect ‘several acquisitions’ in ‘the weeks and months ahead.’

The group has begun to use its €250m acquisition war chest with a €35m deal to enlarge its Italian ceramic tile operations.

It has bought ceramic tile distributors Ceramica Colli and Vallelunga, and tile manufacturer Ceramiche Santa Maria, giving it much needed production capacity.

The acquisitions are expected to add at least €10m a year of EBITDA in the next 12 months, with more forecast when full integration is completed.

‘International demand for the ceramic tiles produced by our Italian business continues to grow at a remarkable rate due to the successful blend of quality, style, and value. The use of a high proportion of recycled raw materials in the tiles has proven attractive to consumers. However, maintaining service levels for our customers has, in recent months, required the business to outsource production to third parties to meet the ever-increasing demand. This is expensive in terms of margin forgone - and is addressed by this acquisition,’ says Geoff Wilding, Victoria executive chairman.

‘This is the first - and smallest - of several acquisitions we expect to conclude over the weeks and months ahead. Nevertheless, we are delighted to have acquired these businesses, which are immediately earnings accretive, but will also enable our Italian business to continue its growth and create value for shareholders.’