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AMETEK Snaps up River Associates’ Coining Holding Co.

Tennessee private equity firm River Associates has sold its interest in Coining Holding Company for $148 million to AMETEK Inc. The deal generated a gross IRR of 76% and netted River Associates 6x its initial investment. Mike Brookshire worked on the deal for the private equity firm; River Associates bought the controlling stake in Coining in August 2007 and made growth investments to support its development.

PRESS RELEASE:

Chattanooga, TN – May 9, 2011 – River Associates Investments, LLC (“River”) announced today that it has sold its interest in Coining Holding Company (“Coining” or the “Company”) to AMETEK, Inc (NYSE: AME) for $148 million, in a transaction that generated a gross internal rate of return of 76% and over 6x its original investment.

Headquartered in Montvale, NJ, with facilities in Malaysia and Morocco, Coining is the global manufacturing leader of highly engineered, custom-shaped solder and brazing performs used for joining applications in microelectronics packaging and assembly. River’s investment in Coining was the largest equity investment made through River V, LP which had a final closing in January of 2006.

River made a controlling investment in Coining in August of 2007, and over the course of the investment worked closely with the management team to implement numerous organic and external growth initiatives including augmenting the management team and opening a sales office in Shenzhen, China. In January 2009, the Company acquired a significant competitor, Semiconductor Packaging Materials (“SPM”), and in October 2010 the operations of Coining and SPM were consolidated into a new, state-of-the-art manufacturing facility in Montvale, NJ, which resulted in significant cost savings and manufacturing efficiencies. During River’s ownership of just under four years, sales grew from $19 million to approximately $65 million.

Gary Holcomb, CEO of Coining since 2004, commented: “We had a choice of financial sponsor partners when we sold Coining in 2007, and we chose River mainly because of their reputation for integrity and their track record for growth. I couldn’t be more pleased with the guys at River and they turned out to be everything we thought they would be. They were a fantastic partner as we took on some pretty aggressive growth plans and a major facility consolidation, and they never wavered even during the recession.”

Mike Brookshire, Partner of River Associates, said that CEO Gary Holcomb and President Ken Whited were great partners and outstanding stewards of value for River’s LP investors. “In the lower middle market, we recognize that success is as much about investing in good people as it is buying star companies. Coining was a good company when we acquired it, but today it is a really great company with a lot of management depth and it is clearly the leader in its industry.”

About River Associates Investments, LLC
Founded in 1989, River Associates is a private equity partner for management teams in change-in-control transactions of lower middle market companies. Target businesses can be privately held or divestitures from larger companies or other private equity groups. River is opportunistic as to industry and has invested in manufacturers, high-margin distributors, industrial service, business service and select non-faddish retail companies. The firm focuses on companies with EBITDA of $3-10 million and will invest in companies headquartered in the United States & Canada. Since its founding, River Associates has initiated over sixty transactions, many of which have been strategic add-on acquisitions to platform companies. The principals of River Associates have worked together for over seventy years, and their alignment of interests with LP investors is illustrated by their substantial GP investment in River funds. Details on the firm can be seen at www.riverassociatesllc.com.