Clayton, Dubilier & Rice (“CD&R”) and Illinois Tool Works today announced an agreement under which ITW’s Decorative Surfaces business will become a new, independent company operating as Wilsonart International Holdings. CD&R will invest $395 million in the new freestanding business to acquire a majority ownership stake. ITW will retain an ongoing ownership stake.
Paul Pressler, a CD&R Operating Partner, will assume the role of interim chief executive officer of Wilsonart upon the close of the transaction, expected in the fourth quarter.
Wilsonart’s business units manufacture and distribute high pressure laminates (“HPL”) and other fine surfacing materials and components used in furniture, office and retail space, countertops, worktops and other applications. Its brands include a leading HPL brand in the U.S., Canada, Mexico and Germany and one of the best known HPL brands in the U.K., France, Spain, Benelux, China and Thailand. With 2011 revenue of $1.1 billion, the company operates under the Wilsonart, Resopal, Polyrey and Arborite brands, selling primarily through a network of company-owned and exclusive, independent distributors in North America and non-exclusive, independent distributors internationally. The company is based in Temple, TX (www.WilsonartFuture.com).
“We believe this transaction creates a very strong foundation for Wilsonart to deliver continued industry-leading performance and are pleased to have ITW as our partner as we work with the Wilsonart management team to further build the value of the business,” said CD&R Partner Nathan Sleeper.
CD&R has obtained committed financing from Barclays, Citigroup Global Markets, Credit Suisse, Deutsche Bank, Goldman Sachs Bank USA, Morgan Stanley, and UBS Investment Bank. Barclays, Citigroup Global Markets, Credit Suisse, Deutsche Bank Securities, Morgan Stanley and UBS Investment Bank acted as financial advisors, and Debevoise & Plimpton acted as legal advisor to CD&R in connection with the transaction.
Clayton, Dubilier & Rice focuses on producing financial returns through building stronger more profitable businesses. Since inception, the firm has managed the investment of more than $18 billion in 52 US and European businesses representing a broad range of industries with an aggregate transaction value of approximately $80 billion. Founded in 1978, Clayton, Dubilier & Rice is based in New York, NY and London, UK (www.cdr-inc.com).