News

Acquisition

Dallas, TX June 05, 2023

Artisan Design Group, a Portfolio Company of The Sterling Group, Completes the Acquisition of Peachtree Cabinet Distributors and GranCo Countertops

Artisan Design Group (“ADG”), a portfolio company of The Sterling Group, today announced the acquisition of Peachtree Cabinet Distributors (“Peachtree”) and GranCo Countertops (“GranCo” or collectively the “Company”). ADG is a leading provider of interior finish products and installation to homebuilders, multi-family developers, and institutional property owners. Both based in Georgia, Peachtree is a cabinet distributor serving the single-family housing market, and GranCo is a full-service countertop fabricator and installer.

“We look forward to strengthening ADG’s presence in the Southeast region through our partnership with Peachtree and GranCo,” said Steve Margolius, CEO of Artisan Design Group. “The addition of the Company will enhance our cabinet offering in the Southeast and expand our product capabilities to countertops, allowing us to better serve our customers through bundled services.”

“ADG is the ideal partner for Peachtree and GranCo because of our shared commitment to providing customers with best in class cabinets and countertops services,” said Ryan Kempf and Todd Whiddon.

About Artisan Design Group

ADG is a provider of design, procurement, and installation services for flooring, cabinets and countertops, serving homebuilders, multi-family developers and institutional property owners. Headquartered in Dallas, Texas, ADG operates more than 172 distribution, design and service facilities and coordinates installation through over 3,000 personnel across 25 states. ADG was formed in 2016 through the combination of Floors Inc. and Malibu Floors. ADG has completed fourteen acquisitions over the past four years under Sterling’s ownership. The company has completed twenty-two total acquisitions since its founding in 2016. ADG continues to seek local and regional market leaders to add to its family of flooring, cabinets and countertops specialists.

About The Sterling Group

Founded in 1982, The Sterling Group is a private equity and private credit investment firm that targets investments in basic manufacturing, distribution, and industrial services companies. Typical enterprise values of these companies at initial formation range from $100 million to $750 million. Sterling has sponsored the buyout of 65 platform companies and numerous add-on acquisitions for a total transaction value of over $14.0 billion. Sterling currently has over $5.9 billion of assets under management. For further information, please visit www.sterling-group.com.

Past performance is no guarantee of future results and all investments are subject to loss.



Acquisition

Dallas, TX May 18, 2023

The Sterling Group Foundation Fund Launches New Platform, Premier Tire & Service

The Sterling Group, an operationally focused middle market private equity firm, announced the establishment of Premier Tire & Service (“Premier”), a new platform formed to build a leading, one-stop tire and auto service solutions provider.

Lucas Cutler, Partner of The Sterling Group Foundation Fund, and other team members have deep experience in the auto aftermarket sector. “We are excited to enter the highly attractive tire retail and service segment of the aftermarket automotive industry and partner with seasoned industry professionals to build a platform of scale,” said Lucas Cutler.  Sterling will partner with John Adams, an executive with 25 years of experience in the automotive aftermarket industry and former CEO of Full Speed Automotive, to build the Premier platform. Premier will seek to acquire independent tire and retail service locations with customer-focused service models in various markets across the country.

Premier is a portfolio company of The Sterling Group Foundation Fund. The Foundation Fund aims to leverage the firm’s operational capabilities and experience in the industrial sector to “set the foundation” for growth at lower middle market companies. Earlier this year, Luke Bateman joined the Foundation Fund team as a Managing Director.  Luke brings over a decade of experience partnering with lower middle market companies and was most recently a Partner at Insight Equity in Dallas. Luke joins a group of both Sterling alumni and new additions that comprise the Foundation Fund Investment team: Steven Hirsch, Director; Jared Bell, Vice President; Bryan Tisdale, Vice President; Lynn Astrup, Associate; and Graham Gillespie, Associate. The Foundation Fund team partners with Sterling’s Portfolio Resources Group, a team of operational executives with expertise in each of the Seven Levers.

About The Sterling Group

Founded in 1982, The Sterling Group is a private equity and private credit investment firm that targets investments in basic manufacturing, distribution, and industrial services companies. Typical enterprise values of these companies at initial formation range from $100 million to $750 million. Sterling has sponsored the buyout of 65 platform companies and numerous add-on acquisitions for a total transaction value of over $14.0 billion. Sterling currently has over $5.9 billion of assets under management. For further information, please visit www.sterling-group.com.

Past performance is no guarantee of future results and all investments are subject to loss.



News

Houston, TX March 29, 2023

The Sterling Group Ranked Number 8 in 2022 HEC-Dow Jones Middle Market Buyout Private Equity Performance Ranking

The Sterling Group (“Sterling”), a Houston-based, operationally focused middle market private equity firm, is pleased to announce that the Firm has been ranked #8 out of over 563 middle market private equity firms globally in the 2022 HEC-DowJones Middle Market Buyout Performance ranking.

Sterling has been partnering with management teams to grow and build winning businesses in the industrial sector for over forty years. “The Sterling team shares a passion for building great industrial businesses through investments in the Seven Levers, and we believe this passion has driven strong results,” said Brian Henry, Partner at The Sterling Group. “We are grateful to our investors for their continued support, and to our management teams for driving initiatives and growth at our portfolio companies.” For more information, including the full ranking, criteria and methodology, please view the full report here.

The 2022 HEC Paris – DowJones Middle Market Buyout Performance Ranking seeks to answer the question: “Which firm(s) in the Middle Market Buyout segment generated the best performance for their investors over the past years?” The ranking analyzed performance data from 563 PE firms and the 2021 funds they raised between 2009 and 2018 with an aggregate equity volume of $1.51 trillion. The HEC-DowJones Ranking draws on private equity fund performance data provided by Preqin and data reported directly to HEC-DowJones.

About The Sterling Group

Founded in 1982, The Sterling Group is a private equity and private credit investment firm that targets investments in basic manufacturing, distribution, and industrial services companies. Typical enterprise values of these companies at initial formation range from $100 million to $750 million. Sterling has sponsored the buyout of 64 platform companies and numerous add-on acquisitions for a total transaction value of over $14.0 billion. Sterling currently has over $5.1 billion of assets under management. For further information, please visit www.sterling-group.com.

HEC Paris and Dow Jones (“HEC-Dow Jones”) released the 2022 HEC Paris-DowJones Middle Market Buyout Performance Ranking (the “Report”) on March 5, 2023. The Report is based on information sourced from Preqin and data reported directly by certain participants in the rankings described in the Report. The Sterling Group provided certain information to HEC-Dow Jones in connection with the preparation of the Report, which addresses certain middle-market buyout fund sponsors and fund vintage years of 2009-2018. The Report ultimately represents the opinion of HEC-Dow Jones and not of The Sterling Group. Neither HEC-Dow Jones nor The Sterling Group has independently verified or assessed the information provided by other parties in connection with the preparation of the Report. In addition, the methodology used by HEC-Dow Jones is subject to inherent limitations due to the confidential nature of the private equity industry, different vintage years, strategies or investment objectives of private equity firms and different performance measures used by such firms. The Sterling Group pays an annual subscription fee to Preqin for access to certain data but did not compensate Preqin or HEC-Dow Jones to be considered for, or ultimately receive, any ranking described in the Report. There can be no assurance that other providers or surveys would reach the same conclusion as the foregoing. The Sterling Group makes no representations or warranties as to accuracy, completeness or reliability of information contained in the Report. Information relating to the Report and its methodology is available here.



Acquisition

Houston, TX March 07, 2023

The Sterling Group and Capitol Meridian Partners Agree to Buy PrimeFlight Aviation Services

Large and growing market, breadth of service offerings and customers served, and strong operating performance all position PrimeFlight for compelling growth

The Sterling Group and Capitol Meridian Partners today announced a definitive agreement to buy PrimeFlight Aviation Services (“PrimeFlight” or the “Company”) from funds managed by global investment firm Carlyle (NASDAQ: CG). PrimeFlight is a global provider of essential aircraft, passenger, and security-related services to commercial airline, airport, cargo, and general aviation customers.

The transaction is expected to close by Q3 2023 upon satisfaction of customary closing conditions. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Headquartered in Sugar Land, TX, PrimeFlight has operations across ~235 stations globally. It provides a full suite of services through its network of subsidiaries, including PrimeFlight Cargo, PrimeFlight GSE Maintenance, Prime Appearance, ProFlo Industries, Skytanking, and Aviation Cleaning Supply. PrimeFlight has more than 20 years of service excellence in the aviation industry, offering customers broad and reliable support, including mission-critical fueling, deicing, and ground handling services. The Company employs ~12,000 employees across its global footprint, with primary operations in North America and Europe.

“This is an exciting time for PrimeFlight as we have significantly expanded our operations outside of North America, continue to execute on new business wins, and we have a strong pipeline of continued growth through our global footprint,” said Dan Bucaro, PrimeFlight Chief Executive Officer. “We look forward to partnering with The Sterling Group and with Capitol Meridian Partners in this evolution.”

Greg Elliott, Partner of The Sterling Group, added: “We have partnered with Dan Bucaro as CEO, Chairman, or Board Member on nine companies over the past twenty years. Dan and his team of industry veterans have built a tremendous platform for growth in PrimeFlight. We look forward to our continued partnership.”

McDermott Will & Emery is serving as legal counsel to The Sterling Group and Capitol Meridian Partners. Latham & Watkins, LLP is serving as legal counsel to PrimeFlight and Carlyle, and Morgan Stanley and Jefferies, LLC served as financial advisors.

About PrimeFlight Aviation Services

Headquartered in Sugar Land, Texas, PrimeFlight Aviation Services provides major airlines, airports, cargo and general aviation customers with GSE maintenance, ground handling services, aircraft services, into-plane fueling, deicing, aviation cleaning supplies, and terminal services, across a global footprint. For more information, visit www.primeflight.com.



Team Additions

Houston, TX February 28, 2023

The Sterling Group Announces Promotions

The Sterling Group, a Houston-based, operationally focused middle market private equity firm, is pleased to announce that Franny Jones, Jim Apple and Jud Morrison have been promoted to Partner. In addition, Claudine Lussier was promoted to Managing Director, Human Capital.

“We are excited to recognize the dedication and contributions of these key team members,” said Brad Staller, Partner at The Sterling Group. “Franny, Jim, Jud and Claudine are experts in their respective roles and have played a critical part in Sterling’s success to date. We are thrilled to celebrate the talents and contributions of these four individuals.”

Franny Jones, Partner, Investor Relations, joined Sterling in 2010 to lead the firm’s fundraising and investor relations efforts. During Franny’s time at Sterling, the firm has raised five funds across its Middle Market, Lower Middle Market and Private Credit strategies totaling over $4.4 billion in capital commitments.

Jim Apple, Partner, Sourcing, joined Sterling in 2013 to lead the firm’s sourcing efforts. For over a decade, Jim has helped families and entrepreneurs, find and structure the right solutions for their businesses. Jim is passionate about understanding the current and potential “future state” of a company and its industry, a passion shared across the Sterling team.

Jud Morrison, Partner, Operations, joined Sterling in 2018 to lead the execution of operational initiatives at Sterling portfolio companies and continuous improvement efforts within Sterling. Jud works closely with Sterling’s investment professionals and portfolio management teams to drive growth and build capabilities for Sterling portfolio companies. Since joining Sterling, Jud has played a critical role in the execution and continued refinement of the Sterling value creation model.

Claudine Lussier, Managing Director, joined Sterling in 2017 to lead both the firm’s and its portfolio companies’ human capital efforts. She is responsible for developing and implementing people and talent management strategies to help drive growth through comprehensive human talent strategies and the identification and acquisition of talent.

To learn more about a career at The Sterling Group, please visit www.sterling-group.com/careers/ or contact Claudine Lussier at clussier@sterling-group.com.

About The Sterling Group

Founded in 1982, The Sterling Group is a private equity and private credit investment firm that targets investments in basic manufacturing, distribution, and industrial services companies. Typical enterprise values of these companies at initial formation range from $100 million to $750 million. Sterling has sponsored the buyout of 64 platform companies and numerous add-on acquisitions for a total transaction value of over $14.0 billion. Sterling currently has over $5.1 billion of assets under management. For further information, please visit www.sterling-group.com.

Past performance is no guarantee of future results and all investments are subject to loss.



Acquisition

Bradenton, FL January 13, 2023

Hi-Lite Airfield Services, A Subsidiary of Frontline Road Safety, Completes the Acquisition of Axtell’s, Inc.

Hi-Lite Airfield Services (“Hi-Lite”), a subsidiary of Frontline Road Safety (“Frontline”), today announced the acquisition of the airfield marking business of Axtell’s, Inc. Frontline, a portfolio company of The Sterling Group (“Sterling”), is a family of operating companies that provides pavement marking and ancillary services to a variety of end markets and customers.

The Axtell’s, Inc. transaction marks Frontline’s ninth acquisition since the platform was established in July 2020. Headquartered in Jermyn, Pennsylvania, Axtell’s, Inc. is a leading pavement marking business specializing in general airfield pavement maintenance. Hi-Lite and Axtell’s, Inc. will operate as an integrated business going forward, with the same crews and leadership team members dedicated to providing customers with best-in-class airfield pavement marking and maintenance services.

“Hi-Lite and Axtell’s, Inc. are a natural fit as both teams share an unwavering commitment to performing work of the highest quality, providing unparalleled levels of customer service, and operating with a ‘safety-first’ culture,” said Chris Miller, President of Hi-Lite Airfield Services.

“Axtell’s, Inc. has always taken great pride in the quality of services we provide to our customers. We are thrilled to partner with a business that has the same values,” said Robert Butts, Vice President of Axtell’s, Inc. “Partnering with Frontline and Hi-Lite will provide us with a tremendous opportunity to expand our reach and capabilities.”

“We are excited to make this investment and look forward to adding additional best-in-class operations to the Frontline platform in 2023 and beyond,” said Mitch Williams, CEO of Frontline Road Safety.

Over the last several years, Sterling has executed on its investment thesis to build a leader in the road safety and infrastructure maintenance industry. Through organic growth and further acquisitions, Sterling intends to continue building Frontline into the leading platform for road safety solutions with best-in-class local execution capabilities. Sterling has a long history of partnering with entrepreneurs and management teams to support the growth of their businesses.

About The Sterling Group

Founded in 1982, The Sterling Group is a private equity and private credit investment firm that targets investments in basic manufacturing, distribution, and industrial services companies. Typical enterprise values of these companies at initial formation range from $100 million to $750 million. Sterling has sponsored the buyout of 64 platform companies and numerous add-on acquisitions for a total transaction value of over $14.0 billion. Sterling currently has over $5.1 billion of assets under management. For further information, please visit www.sterling-group.com.

Past performance is no guarantee of future results and all investments are subject to loss.



Acquisition

Houston, TX December 19, 2022

The Sterling Group Completes the Acquisition of Gulf Winds International

The Sterling Group (“Sterling”), an operationally-focused middle market private equity firm, is pleased to announce the acquisition of Gulf Winds International (“Gulf Winds”). Headquartered in Houston, Texas, Gulf Winds is a second-generation, family-owned provider of intermodal transportation solutions, including container drayage, warehousing / transloading, and container storage.

“Gulf Winds plays a critical role in global trade and logistics through its operations in several growing U.S. ports,” said Brian Henry, Partner at The Sterling Group. “We look forward to supporting management in accelerating the company’s future growth.”

“Given Sterling’s employee-focused approach to their business partnerships and their track record in partnering with branch-based and family-owned businesses, Sterling was the ideal partner for us,” said BJ Tarver, CEO of Gulf Winds International. “By joining forces with Sterling, we will be able to expand our reach and better serve our customers in the U.S. import/export and rail container drayage market.”

Sterling has a long history of partnering with family and entrepreneur owners and their management teams to support the growth of their businesses. 75% of Sterling’s historical platform investments have either been corporate carve-outs or entrepreneur / family-owned businesses.

About The Sterling Group

Founded in 1982, The Sterling Group is a private equity and private credit investment firm that targets investments in basic manufacturing, distribution, and industrial services companies. Typical enterprise values of these companies at initial formation range from $100 million to $750 million. Sterling has sponsored the buyout of 64 platform companies and numerous add-on acquisitions for a total transaction value of over $14.0 billion. Sterling currently has over $5.1 billion of assets under management. For further information, please visit www.sterling-group.com.

Past performance is no guarantee of future results and all investments are subject to loss.



News

Houston, TX November 28, 2022

The Sterling Group Named to Inc.’s 2022 List of Founder-Friendly Investors

The Sterling Group (“Sterling”), a Houston-based, operationally focused middle market private equity firm, is delighted to announce that it has been named to Inc.’s fourth annual Founder-Friendly Investors list. Inc.’s list honors the private equity and venture capital firms with the best track record of success backing entrepreneurs, and this is the fourth consecutive year Sterling has been included on the list.

“We are committed to building long-term partnerships with entrepreneurs and founders to support their business goals and help accelerate their growth plans,” said Jim Apple, a Managing Director at The Sterling Group. “Our recognition on this list speaks to the level of trust we have built with families and founders in the industrial sector over the past four decades.”

Approximately 75% of Sterling platform investments in the last six years have involved partnerships with family or entrepreneur owned or operated businesses. Over the past forty years, Sterling has collaborated with numerous entrepreneur owners, working closely with management to drive fundamental improvement at each platform company.

Inc.’s 2022 List of Founder-Friendly Investors recognizes 184 firms that entrepreneurs can trust and collaborate with while receiving the financial support they need to help accelerate growth. All 184 have a successful track record of remaining actively involved in the businesses after their investment. To see the complete list, go to: https://www.inc.com/founder-friendly-investors/2022.

About The Sterling Group

Founded in 1982, The Sterling Group is a private equity and private credit investment firm that targets investments in basic manufacturing, distribution, and industrial services companies. Typical enterprise values of these companies at initial formation range from $100 million to $750 million. Sterling has sponsored the buyout of 63 platform companies and numerous add-on acquisitions for a total transaction value of over $14.0 billion. Sterling currently has over $5.7 billion of assets under management. For further information, please visit www.sterling-group.com.

Past performance is no guarantee of future results and all investments are subject to loss.

Any subjective views or opinions expressed herein should not be construed as absolute statements and are subject to change without notice to you. No representation, express or implied, is given regarding the accuracy of the information contained herein. Any forward-looking statements included herein are based on The Sterling Group’s current opinions, assumptions, expectations, beliefs, intentions, regarding future events, are subject to risks and uncertainties, and are provided for informational purposes only.

The Sterling Group paid a fee to be considered for this list, which was issued on October 4th, 2022 and covers the period of April 2021 to April 2022. This list is based on an analysis of information gathered by Inc. Magazine using its own methodologies and criteria, which analysis relies in part on certain subjective determinations and is subject to inherent limitations.



Team Additions

Houston, TX October 04, 2022

The Sterling Group Announces Addition of Amath Fall, Operating Partner, Financial Operations

The Sterling Group, a Houston-based, operationally focused middle market private equity firm, announces the addition of Amath Fall as Operating Partner, Financial Operations. As a member of the firm’s Portfolio Resources Group, Amath will lead value creation initiatives in the areas of accounting and financial operations across the firm’s portfolio companies.

Amath brings over 20 years of financial and operational leadership experience as Chief Financial Officer and in other various roles in industrial businesses. Most recently, Amath was the Chief Operating Officer after serving as CFO at Berlin Packaging, where he led a team of around 600 employees. Amath also brings experience from his time as CFO of FleetPride.

“Amath brings extraordinary operational and financial expertise to the Sterling team, and will have a tremendous impact on our portfolio companies as a critical and integral part of the Sterling value creation model,” said Brad Staller, Partner at The Sterling Group.

For forty years, Sterling has partnered with management teams of industrial businesses to drive growth and transformation. Sterling investment teams and members of its Portfolio Resources Group work collaboratively with management teams to seek growth and optimize operations. Over 75% of Sterling’s past investments have been corporate carve-outs or partnerships with family or entrepreneur owned businesses.

About The Sterling Group

Founded in 1982, The Sterling Group is a private equity and private credit investment firm that targets investments in basic manufacturing, distribution, and industrial services companies. Typical enterprise values of these companies at initial formation range from $100 million to $750 million. Sterling has sponsored the buyout of 63 platform companies and numerous add-on acquisitions for a total transaction value of over $14.0 billion. Sterling currently has over $5.7 billion of assets under management. For further information, please visit www.sterling-group.com.

Past performance is no guarantee of future results and all investments are subject to loss.



Acquisition

Houston, TX July 07, 2022

The Sterling Group Completes the Acquisition of Ergotron, Inc.

The Sterling Group (“Sterling”), an operationally-focused middle market private equity firm, is pleased to announce the acquisition of Ergotron, Inc. (“Ergotron”) from Melrose Industries PLC. Headquartered in St. Paul, Minnesota, Ergotron is a leading designer, manufacturer, and distributor of ergonomic products for use across healthcare, workspace, industrial, and education settings.

“Ergotron is a pioneer in ergonomic solutions, and its strong market position and commitment to its customers and employees seamlessly align with Sterling’s employee-focused approach to partnerships,” said Brad Staller, Partner at The Sterling Group. “We look forward to supporting the management team as they look to accelerate growth.”

“Our partnership with Sterling Group will enable Ergotron to continue building on its 40-year legacy of designing solutions that support the wellness of caregivers and workers and how they interact with technology,” said Chad Severson, CEO of Ergotron. “We look forward to collaborating with the Sterling team to continue empowering people across the globe to improve how they work, learn, play and care for others.”

Sterling has deep experience with corporate carve-outs, having previously partnered with management teams to transition over 20 companies to standalone businesses. 75% of Sterling’s historical platform investments have either been corporate carve-outs or entrepreneur / family-owned businesses.

About Ergotron, Inc.

Ergotron, Inc. is a global leader in designing ergonomic solutions that connect people and technology to enhance human performance, health and happiness. Using the Technology of Movement™, Ergotron builds products and custom solutions that help people feel a new sense of energy in healthcare, industrial and office settings, both at home and on-site.

Through its 40-year history, Ergotron has led the industry with innovative, professional-grade products and customer-focused service. The company has earned more than 200 patents and established a growing portfolio of award-winning brands including WorkFit® and CareFit™, and patented Constant Force™ and LiFeKinnex™ technologies. Ergotron is headquartered in St. Paul, Minnesota, with a presence in North America, EMEA and Asia Pacific.

About The Sterling Group

Founded in 1982, The Sterling Group is a private equity investment firm that targets controlling interests in basic manufacturing, distribution, and industrial services companies. Typical enterprise values of these companies at initial formation range from $100 million to $750 million. Sterling has sponsored the buyout of 63 platform companies and numerous add-on acquisitions for a total transaction value of over $14.0 billion. Sterling recently closed its fifth investment fund with $2.0 billion in commitments and currently has over $5.7 billion of assets under management. For further information, please visit sterling-group.com.

Past performance is no guarantee of future results and all investments are subject to loss.