New York. NY, July 19, 2007 - MidOcean Partners (“MidOcean”), a private equity firm with offices in New York and London, announced today that, in combination with the company’s senior management team, it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Bushnell Outdoor Products, an industry leader in sports optics, premium eyewear, and outdoor accessories for over 50 years, from Wind Point Partners. Bushnell’s senior management team will continue in its role and have a significant ownership stake in the company.
Founded in 1948, Bushnell Outdoor Products today has grown to include 11 brands and 15 of the most highly recognized product lines in the optical and outdoor products industries, including such well known brands as Bushnell, Tasco, Bolle, and Serengeti as well as other quality outdoor accessory brands, including Hoppe gun cleaning solvents. The company’s growing line of Outdoor Technology products such as laser rangefinders and handheld GPS devices accelerated growth in recent years. With its emphasis on innovation, emerging technologies and performance innovation, Bushnell Outdoor Products has developed a reputation for developing and marketing the highest quality products, which seek to enhance the experience of outdoor and sports enthusiasts.
“Bushnell fits squarely within our investment philosophy of investing in leading, high-quality consumer brands and complements our existing portfolio of branded consumer product companies.” said Rob Sharp, a managing director at MidOcean. “This is a great company which we believe has tremendous upside and we look forward to expanding its reach as we develop new products and leverage the company’s existing technologies to enter new markets.”
Joe Messner, who has been president and CEO of Bushnell since 1999 and will continue in that role, said, “We have valued our relationship with Wind Point and their unwavering support in helping us execute our strategy. Bushnell has maintained its focus and its passion for providing cutting edge products to the outdoor enthusiast. We have always emphasized innovation and sought out ways to leverage our products and technologies to reach our core customer in their different outdoor pursuits. We are excited to work with the MidOcean team to continue to build upon this focus and expand our business.”
Salam Chaudhary, principal of Wind Point, said, “Bushnell has been an excellent investment for Wind Point. Joe has done a terrific job of executing on the value creation plan we developed when we partnered together to acquire Bushnell, including closing four add-on acquisitions and reinvigorating Bushnell’s new product development efforts. I am confident that Joe and his team will continue to deliver superior performance.”
GE Antares Capital provided committed financing for the transaction. Kirkland & Ellis LLP served as legal counsel to MidOcean Partners and Reed Smith provided legal counsel to Bushnell and Wind Point Partners.
About WindPoint Partners
Wind Point Partners is a private equity investment firm with $2 billion in capital under management. Wind Point focuses on partnering with top caliber executives to acquire solid middle market businesses with a clear path to value creation. Additional information about Wind Point is available at www.wppartners.com