NEW YORK — Private equity firm Liberty Hall Capital Partners L.P. has acquired Dunlop Aircraft Tyres Ltd. for $135 million from AAC Capital Partners, which has been the Birmingham, England-based tire maker's majority owner since 2007, and other shareholders.
New York-based Liberty Hall is focused exclusively on investments in businesses serving the global aerospace and defense industry. Dunlop Aircraft's shareholders initiated a search for a new owner last September.
The deal is subject to customary adjustments as per the purchase agreement, Dunlop Aircraft Tyres said.
Headquartered in Birmingham, Dunlop Aircraft Tyres operates a new tire plant in Birmingham and retread facilities in Mocksville, N.C., and Jinjiang, China, with approximately 570 employees.
The company generated $72 million in annual sales in 2015, serving more than 300 global customers with commercial, private and military aircraft tires. More than 90 percent of Dunlop Aircraft Tyres' revenues are generated in the aftermarket.
Dunlop Aircraft Tyres represents Liberty Hall's first portfolio company focused on providing aftermarket products and services to the global aerospace and defense industry.
"Our intention is to steward the legacy, reputation and brand name that Dunlop Aircraft Tyres has built over its 100-plus year lifetime to grow the company into an independent, global, diversified supplier of aircraft tire products of the highest value," said Rowan Taylor, Liberty Hall's founding partner.
"With a globally recognized brand, proven history of customer service, exemplary technology and a well-balanced portfolio of platforms in the civil and military aircraft sectors, the business is ideally placed to continue to outperform the market.
"The company has also executed a successful business strategy based upon geographic expansion, product and technology range enhancement and modernization. We intend to provide management with the financial, intellectual and human capital necessary to continue to meet the needs of Dunlop's customers."
Dunlop Aircraft Tyres' existing management team, led by Gordon Roper, CEO and managing director, will remain in their roles following the acquisition.
"Management's day-to-day focus will be on continuing to execute our successful business strategy," Mr. Roper said. "Liberty Hall, with its deep experience, knowledge and relationships within the global aerospace industry, is ideally positioned to help us accelerate the outstanding growth record that we have demonstrated in recent years."
Liberty Hall's other aerospace holdings include: Accurus Aerospace Corp., a diversified Tier II aerostructures supplier; AIM Aerospace, a supplier of composite ducting, structural and interiors parts for the commercial aerospace industry; and Bromford Industries, a supplier of complex, close tolerance engine components, fabrications and assemblies and landing gear components.
Liberty Hall also lists truck stop operator TravelCenters of America as among its investment holdings.