Deals continue to happen as autumn takes hold

Albert D. Melchiorre, President, MelCap Partners, LLC

The conditions seem ripe for business activity as fundraising remains strong and recent sales of portfolio companies have bolstered buying power. Buyers, however, are still cautious of putting too much capital to work in any one deal since deals under $50 million now represent over half of all deal flow, according to Pitchbook

Despite the restraint nationwide, local M&A deals continue to get done.

Eaton Corp. completed the acquisition of Rolec Comercial e Industrial S.A. in Santiago, Chile, and RPM International Inc. acquired Kirker Enterprises Inc.

The Riverside Co. remained active in its technology and health care platforms in September by selling HEALTHCAREfirst in Ozark, Mo., to Pamlico Capital after quadrupling its revenue in four years with the help of two add-on acquisitions. Riverside’s portfolio company, OnCourse Learning Co., acquired CompuTaught, a provider of online training courses and print resources for real estate professionals. Riverside also purchased Future Medical Inc., a provider of rental respiratory equipment.

Cyprium Investment Partners LLC exited Convergint Technologies LLC based in Schaumburg, Ill. KRG Capital Partners helped in a recapitalization with Convergint’s senior management team. Morgenthaler unloaded Avtron Industrial Automation to Nidec Corp., a Japanese strategic buyer. Independence-based Avtron has 154 employees and generated sales of $33 million last year.

American Greetings Corp. is being taken private through the efforts and money of the CEO Zev Weiss and President and COO Jeffrey Weiss, respectively, on behalf of the Weiss family and related parties. The offer is 20 percent greater than the current Class A common shares as of Sept. 25. American Greetings has been a publicly traded company since 1958.

Finally, Akron-based FirstMerit Bank announced its agreement to purchase Citizens Republic Bancorp in a stock deal valued at approximately $952 million. This will expand FirstMerit’s presence in Michigan and Wisconsin. <<

Albert D. Melchiorreis the president of MelCap Partners LLC, a middle-market investment banking firm. He is also a director on the ACG Cleveland board. For more information on MelCap Partners, please visit For more information about the Association for Corporate Growth, please visit


Deal of the month

This month’s award goes to TransDigm Group Inc., which continued its M&A aerial attack by acquiring Aero-Instruments Co. LLC from the locally owned private equity company The Mifsud Group. Aero-instruments has been a supplier of proprietary and highly engineered components to the aerospace industry since 1925. It has components on tens of thousands of aircraft globally. More than 60 percent of Aero’s revenue comes from the aftermarket, whereas military revenues make up about 20 percent of the total revenue. Aero was purchased by The Mifsud Group in August 2001. It was bought for about $35 million in cash and employs about 60 people. This is Transdigm’s fourth acquisition in the last 13 months. Transdigm currently operates out of 23 business groups, with 3,800 employees. More than 90 percent of Transdigm’s sales are derived from proprietary products to which it owns the design.