Cortec Sells Weiman Products

Cortec Group has sold WU Holdco (DBA Weiman Products), a provider of cleaning products, to The Carlyle Group and TA Associates. Cortec acquired Weiman through its fifth fund in November 2013.

Weiman is a provider of branded specialty cleaning products for the consumer market under several brand names, including Weiman, Goo Gone, Magic, Stone Care International, Wright’s and Gonzo Natural Magic. Weiman’s commercial division provides specialty cleaning, sterilization and disinfectant products under the Urnex, Five Star and Micro-Scientific brands.

Weiman, led by CEO Chris Bauder, was founded in 1963 and operates from its Gurnee, IL headquarters (near Chicago), with additional facilities in Elmsford, NY (near White Plains) and Denver, CO (www.weiman.com).

During Cortec’s ownership term Weiman grew both organically and through several add-on acquisitions. In January 2014, the company acquired the cleaning products division of Homax Products (then a portfolio company of Olympus Partners) which included the brands Goo Gone, Magic, Stone Care International, Natural Magic, OOPS! Paint Remover, and Gonzo. In 2015 Weiman expanded its healthcare products line by acquiring Micro-Scientific, a supplier of intermediate, surface and high-level disinfectants and a supplier of private label detergents for surgical instrument decontamination and preservation.

“Our investments to expand the company’s leadership team, develop and launch new products, improve systems and infrastructure, build dedicated commercial and eCommerce teams, and complete several strategic acquisitions enabled management to triple the size of the business during our ownership,” said David Schnadig, a managing partner at Cortec. “We are proud to have teamed with management during the past five-plus years.”  The Cortec team, in addition to Mr. Schnadig, included Jeffrey Shannon, Gene Nesbeda, Doug Kruep, Jack Miner and Jacob Grossetti.

Cortec invests in companies with revenues of $40 million to $300 million and EBITDA of $7 million to $35 million. Sectors of interest include healthcare products and services, business and consumer products, value-added distribution and specialty services. The firm was founded in 1984 and is based in New York (www.cortecgroup.com).

“Cortec was a superb partner for me and my team,” said Mr. Bauder. “Their understanding of the business and support of key initiatives have positioned us for continued growth and innovation. We have enjoyed working with the Cortec team and are eager to continue our success with our new partners at Carlyle and TA.”

Equity for the buy of Weiman will come from Carlyle Equity Opportunity Fund II, TA Associates funds and company management.

“Weiman is well positioned for continued growth both organically and through M&A,” said Carlyle Managing Director David Basto. “We will harness Carlyle’s deep industry expertise and global network to support the company in this next phase of innovation and strategic acquisition.”

The Carlyle Group (NASDAQ: CG) invests worldwide in buyouts, growth capital, real estate and leveraged finance. The firm employs approximately 1,650 people in 31 offices across six continents and is based in Washington, DC (www.carlyle.com).

“Weiman’s array of cleaning and care products are well known throughout the US and globally,” said TA Associates Managing Director William Christ. “We look forward to working with Chris Bauder and his management team in the years to come to create value for the company’s current and future customers.”

TA Associates makes buyouts and minority recapitalizations of profitable growth companies in the technology, healthcare, financial services, consumer and business services sectors. Since founding in 1968, TA has invested in over 500 companies globally and has raised more than $24 billion in capital. The firm has more than 85 investment professionals and has offices in Boston, Menlo Park, London, Mumbai and Hong Kong (www.ta.com).

Weiman was co-advised in the transaction by Robert W. Baird & Co. (www.rwbaird.com) and Duff & Phelps Securities (www.duffandphelps.com), with Jones Day (www.joneday.com) providing legal services. Sawaya Partners (www.sawayapartners.com) was the financial advisor to The Carlyle Group and TA Associates on this transaction. Kirkland & Ellis (www.kirkland.com) was the legal advisor to The Carlyle Group and Goodwin Procter (www.goodwinlaw.com) served as legal advisor to TA Associates.

© 2019 Private Equity Professional | March 28, 2019

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