LOS ANGELES--(OpenGate Capital, LLC, a private investment and acquisition firm, announced today it has signed an agreement to sell one of the firm’s portfolio companies, Ride Control, LLC, which includes the Gabriel® (U.S. and Canada) and GRC® (Mexico) brand names, to MAT Holdings, Inc., a global manufacturer and distributor of products in the automotive, hardware, and power equipment sectors. The financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed and it is expected to be complete before the end of the year.)--
“Under OpenGate’s leadership and through the dedication and tenacity of Ride Control’s employees, we have created real and measurable value in the past three and a half years. Today marks another exciting phase for the business as we prepare to transition to MAT Holdings and embark on new growth initiatives.”
Ride Control was acquired by OpenGate Capital in June of 2009 from ArvinMeritor, and was quickly enhanced with the add-on acquisition of Ride Control Mexicana in August of 2009, also acquired from ArvinMeritor. OpenGate Capital improved the operations of Ride Control through the implementation of several strategic initiatives and through the appointment of a new President and CEO, Lisa Bahash.
Andrew Nikou, OpenGate Capital’s founder, Managing Partner and CEO, stated, “This is a complete success story for OpenGate Capital and Ride Control. When we first acquired the business, it was struggling and cash-negative. In just three and a half years, revenues increased by 20 percent, and EBITDA went from a negative position to nearly $20 million today. This was all through our operational strategies implemented within the first year of ownership, which led to expanded distribution and improved operations. We saw great potential in the business and knew we could revitalize the operations and create tremendous upside in our investment. The OpenGate Capital model has proved successful again, and MAT Holdings is the ideal owner for the next phase of growth for Ride Control.” While specific terms of the deal were not disclosed, the investment will result in an approximate return of 50 times invested capital.
Lisa Bahash stated, “Under OpenGate’s leadership and through the dedication and tenacity of Ride Control’s employees, we have created real and measurable value in the past three and a half years. Today marks another exciting phase for the business as we prepare to transition to MAT Holdings and embark on new growth initiatives.”
About Ride Control, LLC
Ride Control designs, manufactures, markets and distributes shock absorbers and strut assemblies under the Gabriel® (U.S. and Canada) and GRC® (Mexico) brand names. The company originated the world’s first automotive shock absorber, “The Snubber,” in 1907, and continues today to be a market leader in the design, engineering, development and production of suspension system products today. The Gabriel® brand name is among the most widely recognized brands in the North American automotive aftermarket. The business generates more than $210 million of sales and has over 1,400 employees in the U.S., Canada and Mexico serving over 600 customer accounts. The company maintains manufacturing, design, warehouse, sales and management offices throughout North America including Detroit, Michigan; Chickasha, Oklahoma; Brentwood, Tennessee; and Queretaro, Mexico. For additional information, please visit www.gabriel.com.
About OpenGate Capital, LLC
OpenGate Capital, LLC is a global private investment firm specializing in the acquisition and operation of businesses seeking revitalization through growth and operational improvements. Established in 2005, OpenGate Capital is headquartered in Los Angeles, California, and maintains offices in Paris, France, and São Paulo, Brazil. OpenGate’s seasoned team of professionals possesses the critical skills needed to acquire, transition, operate and build successful businesses. To date, OpenGate Capital has executed more than 20 transactions ranging from corporate divestitures to turnaround acquisitions, industry consolidations and other special situation investments. The OpenGate portfolio of wholly owned businesses generates nearly $2 billion in revenue and includes businesses from a wide range of industries and geographic markets. For more information, please visit www.opengatecapital.com.
About MAT Holdings, Inc.
MAT Holdings, Inc. is a privately held company, founded in 1984, that has quickly grown as a respected global manufacturer, distributor and marketer of products in the fencing and hardware, automotive, and power equipment sectors. Headquartered in Long Grove, Illinois, it has operations on three continents, including 2.1 million square feet of U.S. distribution and manufacturing space, and provides its customers with a full range of services including U.S. and overseas engineering, quality assurance, logistical and distribution support, strategic warehousing, bilingual sourcing, product development and marketing. For more information regarding MAT Holdings, Inc. and its family of companies, go to www.mat-holdings.com.