Cerberus-led investor group to sell Bowlmor to Atairos

Atairos Group has agreed to acquire Bowlmor AMF, an operator of bowling centers. The sellers are a group of investors led by Cerberus Capital Management LP. No financial terms were disclosed. As a result of the deal, Thomas Shannon, CEO of Bowlmor, will retain his “significant” stake in Bowlmor. Credit Suisse served as financial adviser to Bowlmor while J.P. Morgan Securities LLC did likewise for Atairos.


NEW YORK, NY – June 6, 2017 – Bowlmor AMF (“Bowlmor”), the leader in bowling and entertainment in North America, and Atairos Group, Inc. (“Atairos”), a strategic investment firm focused on supporting growth-oriented businesses, announced today that Atairos will acquire a substantial ownership position in Bowlmor from a group of previous investors led by Cerberus Capital Management, L.P. As part of the transaction, Bowlmor Chief Executive Officer Thomas Shannon will maintain his significant investment in Bowlmor and the management team will continue to lead the company in their current roles. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Tom Shannon, CEO of Bowlmor, said, “We’ve had an incredibly successful partnership with Cerberus, growing Bowlmor from six centers in 2013 to over 300 today. We acquired and revitalized the AMF Bowling and Brunswick Bowling chains through extensive operational improvements and by introducing Bowlmor’s innovative sporting and entertainment experience to a national audience.”

Mr. Shannon continued, “Atairos is the ideal partner for Bowlmor as we embark on the next phase of our growth and development. Bowlmor has long been a great success story by providing a quality sporting and entertainment experience to our customers across our growing portfolio of bowling centers. Together with Atairos, we will build on our success by continuing to promote the unique social and sporting aspects of bowling to every consumer demographic across North America.”

Michael J. Angelakis, Chairman and CEO of Atairos, said, “This is an exciting opportunity for Atairos to invest in the growing out-of-home entertainment market by partnering with a proven entrepreneur in Tom Shannon who has built the leading bowling franchise in North America, with terrific brands and unmatched scale. At a time when consumers are seeking unique and authentic experiences, Bowlmor’s highly differentiated and compelling offering has been enormously successful. With a proven, scalable platform and a highly talented management team, we believe there’s great potential for continuing growth through execution of the business plan as well as related acquisitions.”

J.P. Morgan and Credit Suisse have provided fully committed financing for the transaction. Credit Suisse served as financial advisor to Bowlmor and J.P. Morgan Securities LLC served as financial advisor to Atairos.

About Bowlmor AMF
Bowlmor AMF is the largest operator of bowling centers in the world, with 295 domestic locations, seven locations in Mexico, and three locations in Canada, specializing in corporate and special events, as well as league and walk-in retail bowling. The company was created in 2013, following the merger of Bowlmor, an upscale bowling and entertainment company, and AMF Bowling Worldwide. Bowlmor AMF acquired Brunswick’s bowling center business in 2014 and its portfolio of bowling retail brands includes AMF, Bowlmor Lanes, Bowlero, Brunswick Bowling, Brunswick Zone, Brunswick Zone XL, and Brunswick’s brands. The company has been featured on the INC 500 list of fastest growing private companies in America in both 2014 and 2015.

For more information, please visit www.bowlmoramf.com, www.bowlmor.com, www.amf.com, www.bowlero.com, and www.bowlbrunswick.com