GP Investments Acquisition Corp., the publicly traded acquisition arm of GP Investments, has entered into an agreement to acquire WKI Holding Company, the parent company of World Kitchen, LLC, a manufacturer and marketer of houseware products, at an enterprise value of approximately $566 million. The projected 2016 adjusted EBITDA of World Kitchen is $78 million which calculates to a 7.2x valuation. The transaction is expected to close in July 2016.
World Kitchen manufactures and markets glass, glass ceramic and metal cookware; bakeware; tabletop products; and cutlery. Company owned and licensed brands include CorningWare, Pyrex, Corelle, Revere, EKCO, Baker’s Secret, Magnalite, Chicago Cutlery, Snapware and OLFA. The company employs about 3,000 people and has manufacturing and distribution operations in the United States, Canada, and Asia-Pacific regions. World Kitchen is led by Carl Warschausky, President and CEO and is headquartered in the Chicago suburb of Rosemont (www.worldkitchen.com).
GP Investments Acquisition Corp. (GPIAC) was created by GP Investments in May 2015 through an IPO that raised $172 million for the purpose of identifying investment opportunities in the United States or Europe in the consumer goods, services and retail sectors. GP Investments is an alternative investments firm with 23 years experience in corporate investing. Since founding in 1993, the company has raised $5 billion from international investors and has invested in more than 50 companies across 15 sectors. GP Investments has offices in Sao Paulo, New York, and Zurich (www.gp-investments.com).
“World Kitchen presents a unique investment opportunity, with significant long-term, high-growth potential,” said Antonio Bonchristiano, CEO of GPIAC and GP Investments. “The company is a proven product innovator, with an international footprint across retail, online and other channels. We believe the company will be well positioned to continue and amplify the trend of organic growth, increase efficiencies as the business continues to scale, and take advantage of considerable sector consolidation opportunities.”
Citigroup and BMO Capital Markets are providing $275 million in new debt to support the transaction.
Citigroup served as GPIAC’s capital markets advisor, UBS served as GPIAC’s financial advisor, and Duff & Phelps served as financial advisor to the Special Transaction Committee of the Board of GPIAC.
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom served as legal advisor to GPIAC. Morgan Stanley & Co. served as financial advisor, and Latham & Watkins and Davis Polk & Wardwell served as legal advisors to World Kitchen.
© 2016 Private Equity Professional • Private Equity’s Leading News Magazine • 4-21-16