Freeman Spogli Buys Easy Ice

Easy Ice, a provider of commercial ice machine rental and related support services, has been acquired by Freeman Spogli & Co.

Easy Ice, co-headquartered in Phoenix, Arizona and Marquette, Michigan, is an outsourced provider of commercial ice machines and offers a national subscription service that includes installation, cleaning, preventive maintenance, repairs, backup ice, and peak demand ice. Easy Ice services more than 25,000 ice makers across 47 states.

Easy Ice was founded in 2009 by CEO Mark Hangen and COO John Mahlmeister, who will continue to lead and operate the company in partnership with Freeman Spogli.

“We are excited to be partnering with Freeman Spogli to support the company’s next phase of expansion,” said Mr. Hangen. “We look forward to leveraging Freeman Spogli’s experience in developing value-added distribution and retail services companies.  John and I felt strongly that Freeman Spogli’s proven track record of driving strong organic growth and supporting strategic acquisitions would make them an invaluable partner as we continue to execute our multipronged growth strategy.”

According to Freeman Spogli, Easy Ice is the only national platform offering a comprehensive subscription service for commercial ice machines and the company has a reputation as “The Ice Machine Experts.”

“Mark Hangen and John Mahlmeister have done a fantastic job building Easy Ice into the only national player in the full-service ice machine subscription market,” said John Hwang, a partner at Freeman Spogli.  “A decade ago, Mark and John set out to create a business that addressed the major pain points and challenges faced by owners of commercial ice machines.  Since then, they have successfully positioned Easy Ice as a value-added service partner to all its customers.  We look forward to supporting Easy Ice and the management team as long-term investors in the company.”

Freeman Spogli invests from $75 million to $300 million of capital per investment in North American-based middle-market consumer and distribution companies that are valued from $100 million to $750 million. Typical target companies will have EBITDA from $10 million to $75 million. Since founding in 1983, Freeman Spogli has invested over $4.7 billion in 63 portfolio companies with an aggregate transaction value of approximately $24 billion. The firm has offices in Los Angeles and New York City.

In September 2019, Freeman Spogli closed its latest fund, FS Equity Partners VIII LP (Fund VIII), at its hard cap of $1.85 billion. Fund VIII follows the firm’s earlier fund which closed in October 2014 with capital commitments of $1.3 billion.

FocalPoint Securities was the financial advisor to Easy Ice. Varagon Capital Partners and Madison Capital provided debt financing to support the acquisition.

© 2020 Private Equity Professional | January 9, 2020

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