Norwest Equity Partners Acquires United Sports Brands

Norwest Equity Partners Acquires United Sports Brands

Norwest Equity Partners ("NEP"), a prominent middle-market investment platform, has successfully acquired United Sports Brands ("USB"), a leader in sports performance and protective products. This acquisition, finalized on November 20, 2023, involves a portfolio of well-known brands such as Shock Doctor, McDavid, Cutters, Nathan, PEARL iZUMi, and Glukos. USB's extensive reach includes selling products in over 65 countries through various channels, including sporting goods, specialty stores, and e-commerce.

Transaction Snapshot

  • Deal Value: N/A
  • Deal Type: Acquisition
  • Deal Date: November 20, 2023
  • Investors: Norwest Equity Partners
  • Founders: N/A

United Sports Brands boasts a diverse range of products catering to different aspects of sports, from mouthguards to sports medicine, cycling gear, and sport-specific apparel and accessories. Its global presence is supported by headquarters in Fountain Valley, California, and regional offices in Boulder, Colorado, Belgium, Japan, and Canada.

NEP's history with USB traces back to 2008, starting with the acquisition of Shock Doctor. NEP's previous involvement significantly bolstered Shock Doctor's market position, leading to its eventual transformation into United Sports Brands under Tony Armand's leadership. Armand, who joined NEP as a partner in 2018, plays a pivotal role in this reacquisition, bringing his extensive experience to the forefront.

The strategy for USB's growth involves continued product innovation, strengthening channel partnerships, and focusing on athlete needs. NEP's expertise, demonstrated through successful partnerships with companies like Wahoo Fitness, Pure Archery, Pelican Products, and Michaels of Oregon, is expected to further USB's market dominance and expand its international reach.

The transaction was facilitated by Baird as NEP's advisor, with legal counsel from Jones Day. BMO and Antares provided the debt financing. Lazard and Jeffries advised USB, previously owned by Bregal Partners.

NEP, with a history of over 60 years, specializes in investing in profitable middle-market companies. Its approach is marked by collaboration and respect, aiming to transform successful companies into industry leaders. United Sports Brands, under this new ownership, is poised for continued innovation and growth, strengthening its position as a global leader in sports performance and protective products.

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