Eleven Add-Ons Later, Align Exits Alliance

Eleven Add-Ons Later, Align Exits Alliance

The sale of Alliance is the first exit for Align since closing its inaugural fund in 2016

Alliance's services include source testing and emissions monitoring for compliance with government air-quality mandates

SOURCE: iStock

Align Capital Partners has sold its environmental testing and compliance platform, Alliance Technical Group, to Morgan Stanley Capital Partners.

Alliance provides source testing, emissions monitoring and analytical services to industrial facilities for permitting and compliance in accordance with air-quality mandates from local, state and federal regulatory bodies. The company services customers’ facilities on a repeated basis, with the frequency determined by regulations for each industry.

Alliance’s customers are active in a range of industries including asphalt production; automotive manufacturing; cement production; chemical manufacturing; fiberglass; food & beverage; and iron & steel. The company, led by CEO Chris LeMay, is headquartered near Huntsville in Decatur, Alabama.

Alliance’s first acquisition was the buy of Alliance Source Testing in October 2016 and since that beginning, it has closed 11 add-on acquisitions including the 2021 acquisitions of Aeros Environmental (February), Emission Monitoring Service (April), O’Brien & Gere (April), Air Quality Services (May), and Horizon Air Measurement Services (June). These 11 add-ons expanded the company into 4 new service lines, grew its revenue by more than 600%, expanded its employee headcount from 75 to over 750, and built its geographic locations from 4 to 20 across Alabama, California, Texas, Pennsylvania, Alaska, Arkansas, Colorado, Iowa, Louisiana, Utah, and Virginia.

“Five years ago, we chose Align as our growth partner because we believed they had the expertise and shared growth vision to help us achieve our goals,” said Mr. LeMay. “Align is what we thought they would be – a great partner. They continuously supported our investments in people, process improvement and technology, enabling us to scale geographically and into new services, all while becoming an even better company for our employees and clients.”

“Align exists to support strong management teams in their pursuit of ambitious growth goals,” said Rob Langley, a managing partner at Align. “It’s been a pleasure to work alongside Chris and the entire Alliance team as they consistently achieved each milestone in their journey to become one of the best testing, inspection and compliance companies in the United States. We are extremely grateful for the hard work and dedication of the entire team at Alliance, and proud of the growth they’ve achieved during our partnership these last five years.”

In addition to Mr. Langley, the Align transaction team included Operating Partner Dave Perotti, Principal Jack Parks, and Associate Chris Collins.

Align makes control investments in companies that have from $3 million to $10 million of EBITDA. Sectors of interest include business services, technology, specialty manufacturing, distribution, and healthcare.

The sale of Alliance is the first exit for Align since closing its inaugural fund in 2016. Over the past five years, the firm has completed 13 platform investments and 38 add-on acquisitions. In addition to Alliance, Align owns four other testing and compliance-oriented companies including Barrow-Agee, a Memphis-based provider of food safety testing services (December 2017); Protegis, a Cleveland-based provider of fire and security system inspection, maintenance and repair services (December 2017); SEAM Group, a Cleveland-based provider of electrical safety system inspection, maintenance and repair services (November 2017); and Southwest Elevator, a Fort Worth-based provider of maintenance, repair, and modernization services for elevators and escalators (September 2019).

Align closed its second fund, Align Capital Partners Fund II LP, at its hard cap of $450 million in February 2020. The firm was founded in 2016 by managing partners Steve Dyke, Robert Langley, and Chris Jones – all formerly of The Riverside Company – and has offices in Cleveland and Dallas.

Morgan Stanley Capital Partners, the buyer of Alliance, is the middle-market private equity business of Morgan Stanley Investment Management which in turn is part Morgan Stanley (NYSE: MS), a financial services firm providing investment banking, securities, wealth management and investment management services.

Piper Sandler & Co. was the financial advisor to Alliance on this transaction.

© 2021 Private Equity Professional | July 22, 2021

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