LOS ANGELES — Looking to expand, Turbo Wholesale Tires Inc. has taken on an investor and appointed two to key positions.
Private-equity firm Kingswood Capital Management L.P. has made an investment of undisclosed value in the California tire wholesaler to help it expand its business. Turbo Wholesale, in business since 1983, goes to market with its own tire brands, Lexani, Lionheart and RBP, along with a portfolio of tire maker brands.
Company founder Sarkis Sepetjian and his family will retain "significant" ownership in the business, as well as gaining a seat on the Kingswood board, according to Kingswood.
Turbo has named tire industry veterans Phillip Kane chief executive officer and Larry Jeffries president. Kane is a former Goodyear, Pirelli & Co. and General Parts Co. executive, while Jeffries brings 20 years of industry experience at Tredroc Tire and Bridgestone Americas to his new role.
Terms or scope of the deal were not disclosed.
"With the Kingswood partnership and the addition of Phillip Kane and Larry Jeffries to our management team, we are ready to drive the next phase of growth at Turbo," Sepetjian said.
"The capital and support provided by Kingswood give us the opportunity to execute upon and realize the additional growth initiatives we have long wanted to pursue.
"It was critically important to our family to pick a partner that would care for our employees, customers and supplier partners the way we do and support us in continuing to do things the right way. Kingswood will do just that."
The company operates a 300,000-sq.-ft. wholesale distribution facility in Irwindale, Cailf.
"We are thrilled to be partnering with Sarkis and the Sepetjian family, who have done an excellent job growing Turbo's business over the last decade and building an impressive portfolio of brands, including the company's proprietary Lexani, Lionheart and RBP owned brands," Michael Niegsch, partner of Kingswood, said.
"The investment of growth capital and the additions of Phillip Kane and Larry Jeffries to the Turbo management team position the Company well to pursue accelerated growth and offer customers additional products and services."
Cerberus Business Finance provided Turbo with a new debt facility as part of the transaction.
"The Turbo transaction represents another example of Kingswood's expertise in partnering with family and owner- operated businesses," Alex Wolf, managing partner of Kingswood, said.
"The success we and our partners have had in these situations is an important part of Kingswood's strategy. We are excited about investing in and supporting Turbo's continued growth and look forward to our partnership with Sarkis and the Sepetjian family."