Serbian company Hefestos Capital buys TMK Artrom, Romania, one of the largest pipe producers in Europe

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By RBJ
Romanian pipe manufacturer Artrom Steel Tubes has been acquired by Belgrade-based investment banking company Hefestos Capital from Russian pipemaking group TMK, Artrom said in a statement emailed to S&P Global Commodity Insights.
The sale of Artrom may have been necessitated by pressure from the Romanian government to disassociate industrial enterprises from the Russian business, according to market sources.
Hefestos Capital, the largest investment banking company in Southeast Europe, based in Belgrade, has bought from the TMK Group (PAO TMK) the shares held in the German company TMK Europe GmbH, which is the majority shareholder of TMK Artrom SA.
Milutin Nikolic, co-founder of Hefestos Capital
“We are pleased to announce that we have acquired 100% of the Artrom Steel Tubes company, the most important industrial group in Romania and one of the leaders in the production of premium pipes with special applications in Europe. For 21 years, Hefestos Capital’s mission has been to advise and develop leading companies and brands in South-East Europe, bring old leaders back to the fore and create new champions. The acquisition of the ARTROM company will allow us to offer it a new perspective and we are eager to work together with the company’s management, the team of specialists, but also with the Romanian authorities, our suppliers and customers from all over the world, to further develop the potential ARTROM STEEL TUBES, said Milutin Nikolic, co-founder of Hefestos Capital.
As a result of the transaction, the new real beneficiaries of the ARTROM Group, but also of the companies owned by it in Romania, Italy and the USA, are the Serbians Milutin Nikolic and Pavle Kavran, the co-founders of Hefestos Capital. These companies are no longer part of the Russian TMK Group, no longer controlled by it and no longer connected to the former Russian investor. Moreover, the transaction has already been certified by the competent authority in Germany, the new beneficial owners have been registered with the Romanian Trade Registry and all the relevant Romanian authorities have already been notified. Along with the change in the shareholding, the cancellation of the decisions to freeze the funds of the companies in Romania (formerly TMK) was also requested, due to the sanctions imposed on the former beneficial owner.
Adrian Popescu, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Artrom Steel Tubes says: “The moment is very important for the future of the company because it opens the way out of a period of extreme difficulties, generated by the listing of the former beneficial owner of ARTROM as a sanctioned person. Starting now, the ARTROM Group can resume its development programs postponed by the successive crises of the last three years – the pandemic and the war in Ukraine – and continue its activity in the markets where it has stood out over the years. Besides, the change of the real beneficiary generates a lot of confidence and stability among the 2350 specialists who work in the ARTROM Group companies in Europe and the USA”.
The management team of the company remains the same. There will be no changes in the management of the company’s branches abroad and the activity will continue with all partners under the existing contractual conditions. The ARTROM Group will operate independently and will continue to develop its business in all the niches in which it is present.
The new constitutive act also provides for the change of name of the companies, as follows: TMK Artrom SA became Artrom Steel Tubes, TMK Italia SRL changed its name to Artrom Italia SRL, and TMK Industrial Solutions LLC is now called Artrom US LLC.
Artrom Steel Tubes produces at the steel plant in Reșița the steel required for the pipe plant in Slatina, from where products are delivered to Europe, the United States and Asia, with its branches in Europe and the USA as commercial agents. ARTROM companies in Romania total about 2,350 employees (1550 in Slatina, 770 in Reșita and about 30 in the European and US representative offices) and business of 2 billion lei, of which 85% of the export of products to over 600 customers in Europe and America.
The company Hefestos Capital was founded in 2001 and has been active in the markets of Europe, Asia and Africa in industries such as retail, oil&gas, FMCG, financial services and energy. It is owned in equal proportions by Milutin Nikolic and Pavle Kavran, both with over 25 years of experience in investment banking and private equity.

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