Deal Scoop: Advent Selling Shoes for Crews

Advent International is in the process of selling Shoes for Crews, according to three sources familiar with the situation. The private equity firm recently hired Bank of America and Jefferies to shop Shoes for Crews, which makes footwear for the food services industry.

Advent took a minority stake in the West Palm Beach, Fla.-based company in 2004, via a recapitalizationthat included $30 million in equity, $32 million in senior debt and $60 million from company co-founders Stanley and Matthew Smith. The recap valued Shoes for Crews at $120 million.

Shoes for Crews’ co-founders retained a 60% stake during the 2004 recap but this time around plan to exit their holdings alongside Advent, one source said.

Over its six-year investment, Advent International has helped the specialty footwear company expand in Europe and Canada. As of 2008, Shoes for Crews had grown revenue by 10% since Advent’s investment, bringing total ’08 sales to $130 million, according to the firm’s website.

Shoes for Crews says its slip-resistant footwear reduces workplace slip-and-fall accidents thanks to a special compound used in its “Mighty Grip” soles. The company was founded in 1984 and its products are used by workers at more than half of the top 100 restaurant chains.

Advent International declined to comment.