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DeA Capital Alternative Funds Sgr invests in Fondo Flexible Capital

The foundations of the industrial integration project between Costa Edutainment and Opera Laboratori have been laid

The partnership between DeA Capital Alternative Funds Sgr, a company of the DeA Capital Group, and the Costa Edutainment Group is consolidated with a new financial operation through the Flexible Capital alternative investment fund with a focus on the transformation processes of Italian companies.

After the operation closed in July 2022 with the disbursement of 40 million euros by DeA Capital together with illimity and Muzinich, partly as a capital increase and partly through the subscription of a convertible bond, the new investment envisages a further liquidity injection of 15 million Euros against an increase in the shareholding held by DeA Capital of 8% which thus reaches a total of 18% of Costa Edutainment shares.

The operation aims to develop industrial integration between the Costa Edutainment and Opera Laboratori groups aimed at consolidating leadership in Italy in the edutainment sector and in the management and valorisation of Italian cultural heritage, in full compliance with the mission of the Fondo Flexible Capital which is precisely to support Italian companies that need capital in a transformation process, to protect the historic Made in Italy brands, preserve employment and respond to the request for consolidation and growth of the production base.

The operation involves Poggio 13, a company controlled by the Cavaliere del Lavoro Dr. Giuseppe Costa and placed at the top of its industrial chain, to repurchase the bonds and minority shares of Opera20 held by the American investor Pricoa Private Capital.

Dr.'s thanks go to Pricoa Private Capital - partner of the family and shareholder of Opera 20 with a 7% share since 2020. Costa for having supported the growth and important challenges faced in recent years, especially in the period of restart after the pandemic.

In the reorganization operation, the Costa Edutainment group has completed the acquisition of 100% of the tour operator C-Way, until now held 50% by Costa Edutainment and 50% by Opera20, and has also obtained the possibility of entering in the share capital of Opera Laboratori. Giuseppe Costa will remain at the helm of the two Groups, also to facilitate their integration, as President.

The Opera group, through the parent company Opera 20 and the subsidiary Opera Laboratori, today manages all the "additional services" of over 60 Italian cultural institutions including: the Uffizi, the Galleria dell'Accademia in Florence, the Bargello Museums, the Park Archaeological Museum of Pompeii and Herculaneum, the Royal Palace of Caserta, the Cathedral Complex of Siena, Villa Giulia in Rome, the Pinacoteca di Brera, the Galleries of the Academy of Venice, the Synagogues and the Jewish Museums of Florence and Siena as well as the Ghetto, to the Jewish Museum and the five synagogues of Venice. In over 40 years, Opera Laboratori has gained specific experience in the maintenance, restoration and installation of historical tapestries, clothes and tapestries, not to mention the creation of hundreds of exhibitions and over a thousand installations in the most illustrious Italian museums and sites but also in rest of Europe, the United States, Canada, China and Japan. Opera, which today has 800 employees and a turnover of around 60 million euros, is also the owner of the Sillabe publishing house, specialized in the conception, design and production of art books and merchandising for the most important Italian museums. Sillabe currently manages the gift shops at Pisa airport and in the center of Livorno without forgetting those in partnership with Costa within the Aquariums of Genoa and Livorno.

The Costa Edutainment group manages sites and large public and private structures dedicated to recreational, cultural, educational and scientific research activities and manages 11 structures at a national level: in Liguria, the Aquarium of Genoa, one of the largest aquariums in Europe, the Biosphere, the Bigo panoramic lift, the City of Children and Teens, the Caravelle water park and the adjoining tourist village. On the rest of the national territory, the Cattolica Aquarium, the Oltremare, Aquafan and Italia in Miniatura parks on the Romagna Riviera, the Livorno Aquarium in Tuscany. Costa Edutainment welcomes around 3 million visitors a year in its directly managed facilities, has 740 employees and a turnover of 73 million euros in 2022.

“We are happy to be able to continue supporting an important entrepreneurial reality like Costa Edutaiment active in a strategic sector such as tourism - underlines Federico Giribaldi, Managing Director of the Fondo Flexible Capital -. The completion of this operation in fact lays the foundations, also through the possible acquisition of Opera, for the creation of a leading group in the tourism sector with over 10 million customers, a turnover exceeding €150 million and an EBITDA exceeding 20%" .

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