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Blue Wolf hires Cowen for North American Rescue auction

  • Cowen scores sell-side mandate
  • Company posts ~$30 mln EBITDA
  • Blue Wolf invest in NAR in 2013

Blue Wolf Capital Partners’ North American Rescue, a supplier of tactical medical products, including tourniquets, that save soldiers on the battlefield, is headed to the auction block, according to people familiar with the matter.

New York’s Blue Wolf has tapped Cowen & Co to advise on a sales process for the Greer, South Carolina, company, the people said. The process is expected to kick off within the next 60 days and will likely include both sponsors and strategics, one of the people said.

Turnaround-focused Blue Wolf acquired its majority stake in NAR in March 2013. Sentinel Capital Partners previously backed the company.

Founded in 1996, NAR’s products help reduce preventable deaths. The company supplies the U.S. Department of Defense, federal hospital, civilian law enforcement, EMS and first-responder markets.

NAR generates some $30 million in EBITDA, the sources said.

Under Blue Wolf, NAR has diversified its end markets partly through M&A. The company in January 2016 completed an add-on deal for Two Rivers Medical, which supplies medical products to the federal hospital market.

Blue Wolf, which typically targets complex and special situations in the middle market, invested in NAR after its revenue suffered from 2011 to 2014 due to U.S. troop withdrawals from the Middle East, a case study on the firm’s website states. “This challenged and fragmented sector was ripe for consolidation and organizational restructurings in the wake of reduced government spending.”

Michael Ranson, Vic Caruso and Aakash Patel of Blue Wolf all serve on NAR’s board.

The process for NAR comes as Blue Wolf’s sales process for Pharmaceutical Strategies Group gets underway.

Buyouts reported in September that the firm had tapped Jefferies to run an auction for PSG, whose technology helps companies manage drug spending.

The PE group earlier this week announced the closing of its fourth fund, which collected $540 million. Blue Wolf’s third fund closed in 2013 at $300 million.

Blue Wolf tends to make equity investments of $25 million to $250 million in companies in healthcare, building products, forest products, energy services, and defense and government services.

Spokespeople for Blue Wolf and Cowen declined to comment.

Action Item: Read Blue Wolf’s case study on NAR here: http://www.bluewolfcapital.com/company/north-american-rescue/#tab4

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