Bradco sells majority share to private equity firm

Press enter to search
Close search
Open Menu

Bradco sells majority share to private equity firm

Bradco Supply, a family owned building materials distributor with locations in 30 states, has sold a majority interest to Advent International, a private equity firm. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Bradco ranks in 7th place on the 2008 Pro Dealer Top 350 Scoreboard, which will be published in the next issue of Home Channel News. The company’s sales last year were $1.70 billion.

Brad and Martin Segal, sons of company founder Barry Segal, will continue as president and vp, respectively. Ted Boylan, who succeeded Barry Segal as CEO last February, will stay in that position. The Segal family has retained a 10 percent share in the company, and Apollo Management, a private equity firm that invested in Bradco last year, holds a 5 percent stake.

“We really weren’t looking to sell the company, but [Advent> approached us and the timing was right. It made sense,” said Brad Segal in an interview with Home Channel News.

“We’re very strong financially, and we’re looking to get into new markets,” Segal continued, echoing the comments of the company’s new owners. In a prepared statement, the global buyout firm said it will “work with existing management and the Segal family to … grow through acquisitions of complementary businesses and regional expansion.”

“People are struggling, and there are opportunities out there for acquisitions,” Segal observed. But Bradco is primarily interested in specialty distributors. The company is exiting the lumber business and will focus instead on its core product categories: roofing (which accounts for 70 percent of its revenues); windows and doors, decking, and at some locations, kitchen cabinets and countertops.

Bradco began selling framing lumber in 2004, when Wickes Lumber was divided up in a Chapter 11 bankruptcy court. Bradco purchased 20 Wickes yards, primarily in the northeastern United States, for $65 million. But the Wickes units did not perform well for Bradco, Segal said, blaming “a combination of things.” The company has closed or sold a number of the yards, and fewer than 10 locations are currently up for sale. Three of the original 20 Wickes yards have been converted into Bradco outlets.

Bradco’s new owner, Advent International, has offices in 15 countries. Its other investments in the building products sector include a Bulgarian manufacturer of ceramic flooring and wall tiles; two Romanian companies that make paint, brick and day roofing tiles; a construction equipment rental firm in Spain; and Stone Products Corp., a U.S. maker of manufactured stone facings that was later acquired by Owens Corning and renamed Owens Corning Cultured Stone.

Advent’s initial investment in Bradco, and its financial backing for Bradco’s future growth, comes from a new $10.4 billion fund called Global Private Equity VI. According to the company’s Web site, GPE VI, as it’s called, is aimed at middle market buyouts (enterprise values of $300 million to $1.5 billion) where operational improvements, strategic repositioning and market expansion can drive growth.