Harris Williams & Co. Advises Safety Technology Holdings, Inc. in its Sale to Golden Gate Capital

December 4, 2013

Harris Williams & Co., a preeminent middle market investment bank focused on the advisory needs of clients worldwide, announces the sale of Safety Technology Holdings, Inc. (STH), a leading provider of mission-critical test and measurement instrumentation solutions utilized to establish safety standards and improve design performance across automotive, aerospace, industrial and medical end markets, to Golden Gate Capital (Golden Gate).  Harris Williams & Co. acted as the exclusive financial advisor to STH, a portfolio company of Wynnchurch Capital (Wynnchurch).  The transaction was led by Bill Roman, Jay Hernandez, Matt Volinsky and Chris Zeien from Harris Williams & Co.’s Boston office, along with Julien Darmon from the firm’s London office.

STH marks the third transaction that Harris Williams & Co. has closed in the test, measurement and control sector in the fourth quarter of 2013. The other recent transactions were the sale of Finder S.p.A,  a leading manufacturer of centrifugal, screw, vacuum and piston pumps, to the Pump Solutions Group of Dover Corporations and the sale of Enardo, a provider of safety and environmental control solutions for storage tanks and vapor control systems, to Emerson Electric Co.

“STH serves a critical role in the safety testing ecosystem and is uniquely positioned to develop and capitalize upon increasingly stringent global safety standards,” said Bill Roman, a managing director at Harris Williams & Co. and co-head of the firm’s Industrials Group.  “We greatly enjoyed working with Chris O’Connor (President and CEO of STH) and his team and are excited to witness STH’s continued growth through its partnership with Golden Gate.” 

“Golden Gate’s investment in STH is evidence of the strong interest we continue to see in the market for test and measurement solution providers from both strategic and financial buyers,” said Jay Hernandez, a director at Harris Williams & Co.  “These companies are playing an increasingly vital role across a wide variety of end markets and we expect to continue to see a lot of M&A activity in this sector.” 

STH, through its Humanetics, HITEC & SDI subsidiaries, has been the leader in the development of biofidelic Anthropomorphic Test Devices (ATDs) and related sensor measurement systems since first introduced during the early 1950s.  Today, Humanetics’ suite of ATDs, sensors and calibration and software products incorporate the latest biomechanical human simulations for the development and certification of occupant safety protection technologies.  Coupled with HITEC & SDI’s advanced engineering and instrumentation services, STH’s products stretch across a variety of end markets around the world, including automotive, aerospace, industrial and medical devices.

Founded in 1999, Wynnchurch is a leading middle market private equity investment firm. The firm’s strategy is to partner with middle market companies in the United States and Canada that have outstanding management teams and possess the potential for substantial growth and profit improvement. The firm manages a number of private equity funds with capital under management in excess of $1 billion, specializing in management buyouts, recapitalizations, corporate carve-outs, restructurings and growth capital. The firm is headquartered in Rosemont, IL and has offices in Detroit, Toronto and an affiliate office in Montreal.

Based in San Francisco, CA, Golden Gate is a private equity investment firm with approximately $12 billion of capital under management.  The firm is dedicated to partnering with world-class management teams to invest in change-intensive, growth businesses.  Golden Gate targets investments in which there is a demonstrable opportunity to significantly enhance a company’s value.