Providence Equity Partners has agreed to acquire a majority equity stake in OEConnection, the world’s largest online automotive parts exchange. Ford and General Motors will each maintain a minority stake of 15% in the company. The transaction is expected to close by the end of June.
OEConnection (OEC) is a provider of cloud-based ecommerce services that creates an original equipment virtual parts warehouse containing nearly 50 million parts. More than 20 automotive original equipment manufacturers and more than 100,000 dealerships and independent service shops use OEC’s services to sell, buy, manage and move original equipment parts, facilitating an estimated $20 billion in annual replacement parts trade. The company was formed in December 2000 as a joint venture between GM, Ford, Chrysler and Bell & Howell. OEC, led by Chuck Rotuno, its president and chief executive officer, is headquartered south of Cleveland in Richfield, OH (www.oeconnection.com).
“Providence has a thorough understanding of OEC’s business model and market opportunities as well as a proven track record of successful partnerships and investments in similar companies,” said Mr. Rotuno. “We look forward to leveraging their resources and expertise to expand our global client base, and make it easier for our customers everywhere to grow their parts and service business.”
“OEC is a unique, high growth technology solutions company led by an outstanding management team and backed by two world-class automotive companies,” said Davis Noell, a managing director at Providence. “We are excited to partner with management, Ford and GM to help accelerate OEC’s growth strategy, both organically and through acquisition, and add lasting value to the company.”
Providence invests in the media, entertainment, communications and information industries and has approximately $40 billion of capital under management. The firm was founded in 1989 and is based in Providence, RI with additional offices in New York, London, New Delhi, Hong Kong, and Singapore (www.provequity.com).
William Blair (www.williamblair.com) was the financial advisor to OEC and Jones Day (www.jonesday.com) provided legal counsel. Debevoise & Plimpton (www.debevoise.com) provided legal counsel to Providence.
© 2016 Private Equity Professional • Private Equity’s Leading News Magazine • 6-3-16