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Further expansion of market position

Rayovac is one of the biggest battery manufacturers in the world. Its acquisition of Varta’s consumer battery business will further strengthen its competitiveness

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Rayovac made a great step forward in terms of growth this year when it signed an agreement to combine its operations with Varta’s consumer battery business. As a result of this transaction the American company will acquire all of the Varta consumer battery subsidiaries apart from those in Germany, where a majority holding in a joint venture entity has been agreed. Excluded from the transaction are Varta’s Brazilian joint venture as well as its automotive and micro-power battery businesses. Rayovac puts a figure of 262 mio euro on the total package.
The Prodigy series of torches was developed specially for women.
“This transaction is the most significant milestone in the history of Rayovac,” said Dave Jones, Rayovac chairman and CEO. The link-up has allowed Rayovac to strengthen its global position: Varta batteries are sold in 100 countries worldwide and sales amounted to 398 mio euro in 2001. In Europe alone Varta consumer batteries are sold in 200 000 retail locations, and seven of the ten top global retailers sell them as well. Varta claims to have more than a 40 per cent share of the market in Germany and to be strongly positioned in Austria, Finland, Croatia and Slovenia too.
Jones concluded, “Upon closing this deal, Rayovac will be one of the largest consumer battery companies in the world, occupying the top position in Germany, second place in Europe and an even stronger top position in Latin America, excluding Brazil.”
It was the year 1906 when Rayovac was founded as the “French Battery Company” in Madison, Wisconsin, USA. The name was changed to Rayovac in the thirties. The company, which has been listed since 1997, is represented in more than 50 countries, carries out manufacturing at eleven production plants and employs a workforce in excess of 3 300. Last year the company had sales of US $ 616 mio.
Rayovac offers batteries in resealable blister packs.
The European headquarters is located in Maidstone, United Kingdom, and there are further European locations in Paris, Lage (Bielefeld), Amsterdam, Barcelona, Milan and Athens.
Worth mentioning as significant stages in the company’s history are innovative developments such as hearing aid batteries, a portable hi-fi radio, a no-leak dry battery in a steel casing, silver oxide micro-power batteries and a general-use zinc chloride battery that lasted twice as long as usual. Launched in the late eighties was a new computer clock battery as the power supply for the real-time clocks in computers. Then in the…
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