Advent International sells leading premium sleep solution provider in China
- Under Advent’s ownership, AI Dream has become China’s leading multi-brand sleep solution provider
- Advent Managing Director Andrew Li: “We have found an ideal partner for the next phase of AI Dream’s growth”
Shanghai, 25 August 2021 – Advent International (“Advent”), one of the largest and most experienced global private equity investors, has completed the sale of its controlling interest in AI Dream (“the Company”), which operates global brands Serta and King Koil in China, to the Asia-focused private equity firm Hillhouse Investment Management (“Hillhouse”). Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
AI Dream is a leading branded sleep solution provider and one of the largest players in China’s premium mattress market. Its differentiated product offering includes mattresses, bed frames, smart beds, and customized bedroom solutions.
Under Advent’s leadership and global resources, AI Dream expanded from a single-brand to a multi-brand platform and increased its outlets from 300 to over 2,300 branded stores in more than 600 cities in mainland China and Hongkong SAR. Since 2018, Advent has heavily invested in the Company’s new product innovation, including smart sleep products, as well as in its retail channel expansion and consumer-centric branding, a strategy that has paved the way for AI Dream’s sustainable development and delivered above-industry growth rates. Advent leveraged senior consultant resources from major Chinese consumer companies led by Advent Operating Partner Gary Chu, former president of General Mills Greater China, to provide AI Dream with strategic counsel around supply chain, marketing, branding and HR.
Andrew Li, Managing Director, Head of Greater China of Advent International, said, “After becoming an integrated business through the combination of Serta and King Koil, which themselves enjoy a strong presence in over 100 countries, AI Dream has continued to go from strength to strength and is now one of the largest players in China’s premium mattress market. We have found an ideal partner in Hillhouse who has the expertise and track record to create lasting value and support to AI Dream in its next phase of growth.”
Formed in 2018 through the merger of Serta and King Koil – two leading global premium mattress brands which entered the China market in 1998 and 2000, respectively – AI Dream combined two iconic names with operations in Hong Kong SAR and mainland China to create a premium, sleep solution platform. The Company continued to build upon the platform, acquiring the China license of Germany’s leading premium sleep system brand, Ruf Betten, in 2019.
Edward Wu, CEO of AI Dream, commented, “We thank Advent for their huge support and resources in helping us to build our leading market share and become one of the fastest growing consumer brands in China. We have a strong track record in providing high-end, customized sleep products and quality services to customers and have successfully integrated these offerings into the premium lifestyles of our Chinese and global consumers. We will continue to listen to our customers and innovate our suite of complementary products in order to offer them the best in contemporary sleep solutions.
“Looking ahead, with Hillhouse’s advanced experience and professional expertise, we’re confident that they will help us take the next step in our company’s continued growth momentum.”
David Swift, Chairman and CEO of Serta Simmons Bedding, said, “The Serta brand has had terrific growth in China since we entered the market in 1998 and has become among our top three largest markets in the world. We look forward to continuing the licensing relationship with AI Dream under Hillhouse’s new ownership and to partnering with them to drive the continued growth of the Serta business in China.”
Wei Cao, Partner of Hillhouse Group, said, “We are excited about our partnership with AI Dream. We believe that China’s mattress market continues to have tremendous growth potential, propelled by a new generation of a more health-conscious middle class and increasing demand for high quality sleep products. By leveraging our expertise in supply chain management and digital enablement and transformations, we look forward to working with Al Dream’s experienced management team to enhance the company’s core competencies and the future growth of its premium, globally recognized sleep solution brands.”
UBS and Deutsche Bank acted as financial advisors to Advent in this transaction.
Advent has been investing in the retail, consumer and leisure sectors for over 30 years and has completed 82 investments worldwide. Relevant investments include Dufry, Grupo CRM, Thrasio, DFM Foods, Olaplex, Aimbridge Hospitality, Grupo BIG (formerly Walmart Brazil Group), Enjoy S.A., Dixcy Textiles Private Limited, YDUQS (formerly Estácio Participações), First Watch, and Sovos Brands.
About AI Dream
AI Dream is a leading premium sleep solution provider in China and operates a portfolio of globally recognized brands, including Serta, King Koil, and Ruf Betten. AI Dream boasts a comprehensive offering of premium, top-quality sleep system products, including mattresses, bed frames, adjustable foundations, pillows and more. With a consumer centric marketing approach and an omni-channel strategy, AI Dream’s nationwide distribution touches upon all the settings where consumers would interact with our products, at home and when traveling. At the end of 2020, AI Dream has ~2,300 branded stores in 600+ cities across mainland China and Hong Kong SAR, holds a leading market position on major e-commerce platforms, and partners with 1,300+ luxury hotels and resorts in China. AI Dream’s Serta license is held through a Cayman entity and sublicensed to Hong Kong SAR and mainland China.
About Serta Simmons Bedding
Serta Simmons Bedding, LLC is one of the largest manufacturers, marketers and suppliers of mattresses in North America. Based in Atlanta, SSB owns and manages two of the best-selling bedding brands in the mattress industry: Serta®, which has five other independent licensees, and Beautyrest®. The brands are distributed through national, hospitality, and regional and independent retail channels throughout North America. SSB also owns Simmons® and Tuft & Needle® direct-to-consumer mattress brands. SSB operates 27 plants in the U.S. and Canada. For more information about SSB and its brands, visit www.sertasimmons.com.
About Advent International
Founded in 1984, Advent International is one of the largest and most experienced global private equity investors. The firm has invested in over 380 private equity investments across 42 countries, and as of March 31, 2021, had $75 billion in assets under management. With 14 offices in 11 countries, Advent has established a globally integrated team of over 245 private equity investment professionals across North America, Europe, Latin America and Asia. The firm focuses on investments in five core sectors, including business and financial services; health care; industrial; retail, consumer and leisure; and technology. After 35 years dedicated to international investing, Advent remains committed to partnering with management teams to deliver sustained revenue and earnings growth for its portfolio companies.