Harris Williams Advises Continental Batteries on its Sale to H.I.G. Capital

January 21, 2021

Harris Williams, a global investment bank specializing in M&A advisory services, announces it advised Continental Batteries (Continental), a portfolio company of Incline Equity Partners (Incline), on its sale to H.I.G. Capital (H.I.G.). Continental is a leading distributor of aftermarket batteries to the electric utility vehicle, automotive, commercial, marine and industrial markets. The transaction was led by Brian Lucas, Graham Gillam and Jay Reynolds of the Harris Williams Specialty Distribution Group and Nicholas Petrick of the firm’s Transportation & Logistics (T&L) Group.

“Continental delivers an essential service offering across a diverse client base and has grown into one of the industry’s most recognized and reliable distributors of aftermarket batteries across a range of end market applications,” said Brian Lucas, a managing director at Harris Williams. “It was a pleasure working with the teams at Continental and Incline on this transaction and we look forward to seeing the company continue to deliver on its value proposition.”

“It has been a privilege to work with Eric Royse, CEO of Continental, the entire Continental team and Incline. We are excited to have achieved a great outcome for the company and Incline and to continue our strong record of success in specialty distribution,” said Graham Gillam, a director at Harris Williams. “Continental is led by an impressive team, has demonstrated stability through economic uncertainty, presents a strong M&A opportunity in a highly fragmented market, offers compelling organic growth potential and is focused on delivering exceptional service to its customers; all factors that will no doubt position it for tremendous future success.”

John Morley, a partner at Incline, said, “We greatly appreciated our partnership with Harris Williams in sharing the Continental story, particularly with today’s constantly evolving backdrop keeping us all on our toes. They delivered an excellent outcome for Incline and found a fantastic new owner for Eric and the Continental team.”

Eric Royse, CEO of Continental, added, “Harris Williams has been a great partner for Continental throughout this transaction.  Their diligence, thoroughness and adaptability at every level, along with their industry expertise, resulted in an outcome that is excellent for all parties.  All of Continental leadership, including myself, are thrilled we had the opportunity to work with Harris Williams and are excited about the company’s next chapter.”

A renowned battery distributor since 1932, Continental remains committed to the principles and ethics upon which it was founded. With 100 locations in North America, Continental now has a distribution network of more than 30,000 dealer locations. Continental’s global headquarters are in Dallas, at the original location where they started out 88 years ago.

Incline, headquartered in Pittsburgh, is a private equity firm investing in manufacturing, distribution and business services companies. Incline is generally seeking growing companies with enterprise values of $25 million to $450 million.  Incline’s typical investment types are ownership transitions for privately held businesses, buyouts and corporate divestitures within the U.S. and Canada. Learn more about Incline by visiting www.inclineequity.com.

H.I.G. is a leading global private equity and alternative assets investment firm with $43 billion of equity capital under management (based on total capital commitments managed by H.I.G. and affiliates). Based in Miami, and with offices in New York; Boston; Chicago; Dallas; Los Angeles; San Francisco; and Atlanta in the U.S., as well as international affiliate offices in London; Hamburg, Germany; Madrid; Milan; Paris; Bogotá, Colombia; Rio de Janeiro; and São Paulo, H.I.G. specializes in providing both debt and equity capital to small and mid-sized companies, utilizing a flexible and operationally focused/value-added approach. Since its founding in 1993, H.I.G. has invested in and managed more than 300 companies worldwide. The firm's current portfolio includes more than 100 companies with combined sales in excess of $30 billion.

Harris Williams, an investment bank specializing in M&A advisory services, advocates for sellers and buyers of companies worldwide through critical milestones and provides thoughtful advice during the lives of their businesses. By collaborating as one firm across Industry Groups and geographies, the firm helps its clients achieve outcomes that support their objectives and strategically create value. Harris Williams is committed to execution excellence and to building enduring, valued relationships that are based on mutual trust. Harris Williams is a subsidiary of the PNC Financial Services Group, Inc. (NYSE: PNC).

Harris Williams’ Specialty Distribution Group has experience across a variety of sectors, including automotive and heavy duty aftermarket; building products; consumer; electrical and communications; foodservice; healthcare; industrial; and technology. For more information on the firm’s Specialty Distribution Group, visit the Specialty Distribution Group’s section of the Harris Williams’ website.

The Harris Williams T&L Group serves companies in a broad range of attractive niches, including third-party logistics (3PL), automotive and heavy-duty vehicle, transportation equipment, and truck, rail, marine and air transportation. For more information on the firm’s T&L Group and other recent transactions, visit the T&L Group’s section of the Harris Williams website.

Harris Williams LLC is a registered broker-dealer and member of FINRA and SIPC. Harris Williams & Co. Ltd is a private limited company incorporated under English law with its registered office at 8th Floor, 20 Farringdon Street, London EC4A 4AB, UK, registered with the Registrar of Companies for England and Wales (registration number 07078852). Harris Williams & Co. Ltd is authorized and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Harris Williams & Co. Corporate Finance Advisors GmbH is registered in the commercial register of the local court of Frankfurt am Main, Germany, under HRB 107540. The registered address is Bockenheimer Landstrasse 33-35, 60325 Frankfurt am Main, Germany (email address: hwgermany@harriswilliams.com). Geschäftsführer/Directors: Jeffery H. Perkins, Paul Poggi. (VAT No. DE321666994). Harris Williams is a trade name under which Harris Williams LLC, Harris Williams & Co. Ltd and Harris Williams & Co. Corporate Finance Advisors GmbH conduct business.