Iconic Group Sold to Fenway Partners
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Iconic Group Sold to Fenway Partners

Fenway Partners has acquired Iconic Group from Friend Skoler & Co. and Raymond James Capital.

Iconic Group is a provider of photography services at university and college graduations and major endurance races, and also provides holiday photographs at shopping malls nationwide. The company maintains a national network of more than 2,000 professional photographers. Across all its markets, Iconic provides professional photography services at 10,000 events and 30,000 shoot dates, taking 53 million consumer images per year under the GradImages, University Photo, WorldWide Photography and MarathonFoto brands.  The company, led by CEO Denise Conroy, is headquartered in Atlanta, GA (www.iconicgroup.com).

Raymond James Capital and Friend Skoler formed Event Photography Group (EPG) in June 2007 to acquire and consolidate Bob Knight Photomarketing, a Tallahassee, FL-based provider of graduation photography services to high schools and universities primarily in the Southeastern US and California; and Chappell Studio, a Fairfield, IA-based national provider of graduation photography services to high schools and universities and marathon and endurance races in the US and Europe.

In February 2016 the company rebranded EPG as Iconic Group and opened its headquarters in Atlanta. Over the term of ownership, the two firms worked with Iconic’s management to close and integrate 18 add-on acquisitions, recruited new senior management, and implemented best operational practices across the organization.

Since acquisition in 2007, Iconic’s revenues almost tripled and the investment in the company generated in excess of 3x cash-on-cash return. “We are proud of the innovative strategies that Iconic Group has deployed to become the market leader and dominant consolidator in the event photography industry,” said Steven Skoler, a Managing Director of Friend Skoler.  David Thomas, Managing Director, led the transaction for Raymond James Capital.

Friend Skoler & Co. invests from $3 million to $20 million in companies that have enterprise values between $10 million and $100 million. The firm was founded in 1998 by Alexander Friend and Steven Skoler and is headquartered in Saddle Brook, NJ (www.friendskoler.com).

“Friend Skoler and Raymond James unwavering support of the management team enabled the company to establish itself as the gold standard service provider in its markets, and Iconic is positioned for continued growth with our outstanding talent, leading technologies and customer-centric product and marketing strategies,” said Ms. Conroy.

Raymond James Capital is the merchant banking subsidiary of Raymond James Financial (NYSE: RJF). The group makes direct investments in recapitalizations and acquisitions of middle market private companies (www.raymondjamescapital.com).

Fenway Partners, the buyer of Iconic, makes control investments of $50 million to $75 million in companies with $100 million to $600 million of enterprise value and $15 million to $75 million of EBITDA. The firm is headquartered in New York (www.fenwaypartners.com).

Raymond James Investment Banking was the financial advisor to Iconic. The sale of Iconic to Fenway Partners closed on May 15, 2018.

© 2018 Private Equity Professional | May 29, 2018

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