American Securities, a middle market PE firm, is expected to announce the acquisition before the end of the month, one person says. The deal has been in the works for some time but the choppy credit markets have hampered the transaction, a banker says.
UPDATE: Dow Jones LBO Wire says American Securities is buying Unifrax for about $927 million. The PE firm is putting in about $495 million of equity, the story says.
New York-based American Securities previously owned Unifrax from September 2003 to May 2006. It sold the company in 2006 to AEA Investors for an undisclosed amount. Officials for AEA couldn’t be reached for comment.
Niagara Falls, N.Y.-based Unifrax makes ceramic fiber insulation products that are used in industrial, automotive and fire protection applications. The company has 20 plants in the U.S., Europe, Asia and Latin America and employs about 1,400 globally.
Unifrax is in the market for a $540 million loan to back the sale to American Securities, according to Thomson Reuters Loan Pricing Corp. Goldman Sachs is leading the financing, the story says.
American Securities typically focuses on consumer, healthcare, industrial as well as the services, information and media sectors. The firm is currently investing out of its fifth fund, American Securities Partners V LP, which raised $2.3 billion in 2008.
American Securities declined comment.