French investment firm Wendel Group has entered into an agreement to sell Japanese internal gear pump manufacturer Nippon Oil Pump Co Ltd (NOP) to Citic Capital Japan Partners III LP, a Japan buyout fund managed by Citic Capital Holdings Ltd.

Wendel is set to receive net proceeds of approximately €85 million from the sale, which is around 3.5 times the initial equity it invested in Nippon Oil Pump in 2013.

Since 2013 Wendel has actively supported Nippon Oil Pump’s sales & marketing and research & development functions to accelerate international expansion, including through the introduction of new innovative products, particularly filter pumps.

Under Wendel ownership, Nippon Oil Pump’s reported revenues have increased from ¥4.8 billion in 2013 to ¥6.1 billion in 2017.

Wendel says that selling Nippon Oil Pump is in line with the company’s strategic commitment to simplify its portfolio, and to focus on larger equity investments based in Europe, North America and Africa.

“NOP’s management team has done a terrific job over the past several years expanding the company’s capabilities in Japan and overseas, and building a solid foundation for long-term growth,” said André François-Poncet, Wendel Group CEO.

Toshihiko Shirabe, CEO of Nippon Oil Pump, said: “We are grateful for the support Wendel has provided over the past several years. Our partnership has allowed us to significantly grow the company and invest in our people, our industrial capabilities, and further develop our international reach.”

The transaction is expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2018.