Liberty Hall Acquires AIM Aerospace
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Liberty Hall Acquires AIM Aerospace

aim nf1Liberty Hall Capital Partners, a specialist investor in the aerospace and defense industries, has acquired AIM Aerospace, a supplier of composite parts used in the commercial aerospace industry, for $200 million. Co-investing on this transaction with Liberty Hall are BlackRock Private Equity Partners and Northwestern Mutual Capital.

aim nf11AIM Aerospace is a Tier II supplier of composite ducting, sub-structural and interiors parts for the commercial aerospace industry.  Products include closets, lavatories, overhead stowage bins, crew rest modules, seat furniture, flight deck doors, and class dividers/partitions, among others. Customers include Boeing (737, 777 and 787 platforms), Kawasaki Heavy Industries, Spirit AeroSystems and B/E Aerospace. The company was founded in 1988 as part of the UK-based AIM Group PLC. Today, AIM Aerospace has more than 1,000 employees and is headquartered south of Seattle in Renton, WA. AIM has additional facilities in Auburn and Sumner, WA. AIM’s existing management team, led by John Feutz, President, will remain in their roles following the acquisition (www.aim-aerospace.com).

Rowan Taylor nf2Liberty Hall intends to use AIM Aerospace as a platform to build a fully-integrated, diversified composites supplier through both organic growth and acquisitions. “The commercial aerospace market continues to enjoy strong, long-term secular growth, driven by demand for next generation aircraft,” said Rowan Taylor, Liberty Hall’s founding Partner. “With this unprecedented growth in aircraft deliveries, aircraft manufacturers are increasingly transitioning from metallic to composite materials that provide weight savings and other beneficial properties that increase fuel efficiency and durability.”

Picture24Liberty Hall Capital Partners invests exclusively in businesses serving the global aerospace and defense industry. The firm was founded by Mr. Taylor in July 2011 and is headquartered in New York (www.libertyhallcapital.com).

“As a private equity firm focused only on the aerospace and defense industry, we see significant opportunities in this segment of the industry and believe that AIM Aerospace possesses an ideal combination of capabilities, customer relationships and a proven track record of success,” said Mr. Taylor. “The growing demand for composites provides an opportunity for AIM to serve as the platform investment for Liberty Hall to build a fully-integrated, diversified composites supplier.”

accurus nfAIM Aerospace represents Liberty Hall’s second platform acquisition.  In November 2013, Liberty Hall formed Accurus Aerospace, a fully-integrated Tier II aero-structures supplier. Since its formation, Accurus has completed three add-on acquisitions with the buys of Precise Machining & Manufacturing (2013), McCann Aerospace Machining (2014) and LaCroix Industries (2015).

Financing for the AIM acquisition was arranged by Antares Capital (www.antarescapital.com), Citizens Bank (www.citizensbank.com) and KeyBanc Capital Markets (www.key.com). A second lien financing facility was arranged by Carlyle GMS Finance (www.carlyle.com). Legal advice to Liberty Hall was provided by Schulte Roth & Zabel (www.srz.com).

AIM’s advisor was Lincoln International (www.lincolninternational.com). Legal advice was provided by Stephenson Harwood (www.shlegal.com) and Riddell Williams (www.riddellwilliams.com).

© 2016 PEPD • Private Equity’s Leading News Magazine • 2-3-16

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