Arlington Quickly Builds Forging Platform

Wasting no time, Arlington Capital Partners has closed the second acquisition for its newly formed Forged Solutions Group with the buy of Firth Rixson Forgings from Arconic (formerly Alcoa).

In June 2014, Alcoa purchased Firth Rixson for $2.8 billion from Oak Hill Capital Partners. In November 2016, Alcoa split into two companies; Arconic, a maker of products used in the aerospace and automotive industries (including the operations of Firth Rixson); and Aloca, which retained the company’s legacy aluminum operations.

Arlington Capital formed Forged Solutions Group in November 2019 as a new platform in the aerospace components sector to acquire the Blaenavon forging business of Doncasters Group. Blaenavon is a maker of complex, precision-forged rings and closed die products used by original equipment manufacturers and Tier 1 suppliers in the aerospace and defense sectors. The business, led by Managing Director Lee Smith, is based 90 miles southwest of Birmingham in Blaenavon, UK.

Firth Rixson is a maker of complex closed die forgings, forged discs, and forward-and-backward extrusion produced shafts and cylinders used by original equipment manufacturers and Tier 1 suppliers in the aerospace and defense sectors. Firth Rixson is based 90 miles north of Birmingham in Sheffield, UK.

“The company is a perfect complement to our recent acquisition of Doncasters Group’s Blaenavon Forging business,” said Peter Manos, a managing partner at Arlington Capital. “The company possesses proprietary and difficult-to-replicate manufacturing capabilities and is well positioned on fast-growing, next-generation engine platforms such as the LEAP, and additionally has a strong portfolio of aftermarket components on sole-sourced programs.”

Editor’s note: The LEAP (leading edge aviation propulsion) is a next-generation turbofan engine platform made by CFM International, a joint venture between GE Aviation and Safran Aircraft Engines.

“We are excited to partner with a veteran aerospace investor in Arlington Capital and the management team at Blaenavon to embark on the company’s next chapter of growth,” said Ben McIvor, general manager of Firth Rixson. “The combination of the two businesses and the creation of Forged Solutions Group creates a supplier with the available capacity of five manufacturing facilities, complementary and fully integrated manufacturing and testing capabilities, a broader product portfolio, and strong managerial expertise to better serve our customers,”

“We could not be happier to have Ben, his deeply experienced team, and Firth Rixson’s long history in aerospace forging join Forged Solutions Group and partner with Arlington Capital,” said Erica Son, a vice president at Arlington Capital. “Forged Solutions Group will continue to evaluate strategic acquisitions that add new customers, new capabilities, and geographic reach to better serve our customers.”

Arlington Capital was founded in 1999 and has completed over 90 acquisitions since its inception. The Chevy Chase, MD-based firm is currently investing out of Arlington Capital Partners V LP, a $1.7 billion fund that closed in June 2019.

© 2019 Private Equity Professional | December 2, 2019

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