A Supercharged Sale

Situation:

A Michigan-based supplier of automotive aftermarket parts had a corner on a niche enthusiast market. After a successful experience as a partially ESOP-owned company, the owners decided the time was right to transition to 100% ESOP ownership and put the future of the company in the hands of the employees. Recognizing the importance of this historic transaction for the company, the ESOP trustees turned to our ESOP experts, relying on our fairness opinion and financial advice to approve the transaction.

The company enjoyed rapid growth over the next several years under employee ownership. As a result of its success, the company drew the attention of a large public racing products company, and an attractive acquisition offer soon followed. Drawing on the trust we built from our prior work with the ESOP, the trustee turned to us again for guidance on this important decision. Following our advice to the trustee, the employees voted to approve the sale.

Result:

The buyer, a large public company that placed a high value on strong performance, saw the acquisition as a strategic entrée into a lucrative niche market. As a result, the company was sold for a significantly higher price than the ESOP had paid just a few years earlier. Hourly warehouse and call center workers became millionaires overnight, providing security for their families and changing their lives.