CHS Completed Sale of Weasler Engineering, Inc.
Chicago, Illinois – On February 4, 2003, Code Hennessy & Simmons II, L.P. completed the sale of Weasler Engineering, Inc., a Fund II portfolio company since 1995. Weasler was sold to Industrial Growth Partners, a San Francisco-based private equity firm.
Weasler Engineering, Inc. is a preeminent manufacturer of mechanical power transmission components primarily for the agricultural and lawn and turf equipment industries. Weasler’s products are sold to original equipment manufacturers, as well as to distributors of aftermarket replacement parts. The company is headquartered in West Bend, Wisconsin.
CHS acquired Weasler in tandem with management in 1995 from a family group as a platform investment for its second fund. "Our investment strategy was to build on the company’s leading domestic market share position and to penetrate the European market," commented Brian Simmons, a co-founder of CHS, "and the strategy proved to be very successful thanks to outstanding execution on the part of the Weasler management team."
James Hawkins, Chief Executive Officer of Weasler remarked, "We wanted to improve the company’s profitability through the implementation of current manufacturing techniques and the completion of attractive capital investments. Together with CHS we accomplished our goals."
The implementation of the investment strategy at Weasler resulted in a significant increase in revenue and profitability for the company. During CHS’ ownership, Weasler’s domestic revenue increased by over 25% and it completed the acquisition of a European driveline manufacturer, Agritrans BV. Weasler also invested over $20 million during this period to modernize and expand its production capability. These capital investments improved operating efficiencies and expanded profit margins.
Founded in 1988, Code Hennessy & Simmons LLC is a Chicago-based private equity firm that has managed more than $1.6 billion of capital in four funds. The firm focuses on building shareholder value in middle market companies through strong relationships and sound investment strategies.