Canadian mid-market private equity firm Kilmer Capital Partners has sold for an undisclosed amount its majority position in Coalision Inc to a group of private equity and other investors led by Bernard Mariette, the company’s president and CEO. Other members of the consortium included Pelican Investment Funds LP, Simon Equity Partners, André Desmarais, members of the Hermès family and the Fonds de solidarité des travailleurs du Québec FTQ. The deal will enable the global growth of the Longueuil, Québec-based Coalision and its activewear apparel brand Lolë, the company said. Kilmer invested in Coalision in December 2008 and will retain a minority stake in the company going forward.
Strategic investor group led by CEO Bernard Mariette purchases majority stake in Coalision Inc.
Lolë is now poised to leverage last three-year 130 per cent growth into international expansion
MONTREAL, April 23, 2014 /CNW/ – A group of strategic and financial investors led by Bernard Mariette, CEO & President of Coalision Inc., have purchased a majority interest in Coalision from Kilmer Capital Partners. This investment will enable Coalision’s growing activewear brand Lolë to expand its retail and web business internationally as well as its global wholesale business.
The investor group includes strategic and financial partners that offer significant opportunities for Lolë through their extensive network, consumer branded products experience, vast retail and distribution knowledge as well as their financial and international strength. The strategic and financial partner group includes Pelican LP, Simon Equity Partners, a group comprising André Desmarais, certain members of the Hermès family, and the Fonds de solidarité FTQ.
“This strategic and financial transaction represents a turning point for Lolë as it confers upon us the network, the expertise and the financial strength to compete worldwide with major players in the industry. We believe that this transaction will enable us to achieve our strategic plan,” says Bernard Mariette. He added, “We are particularly pleased that the founders of the company, Eric D’Anjou and Evelyn Trempe, as well as Kilmer Capital Partners, who acquired a majority stake in 2008, will retain a significant minority interest. We feel that our company is well rooted and will only grow stronger in the future.”
“Since 2009, when Bernard became CEO and initially invested in Coalision, he and his team have been transforming the Company and Lolë at all levels, from the product offering to the marketing strategy to the distribution channels. In fact, over the past three years, the team has profitably grown revenues by over 130 per cent. Under his leadership and with our new partners, we are convinced that Coalision and Lolë will continue their success story. We are delighted to remain a minority shareholder and to be part of the future of Coalision,” says Marie-Claude Boisvert, Managing Partner at Kilmer Capital Partners.
Bernard Mariette concluded by saying that “I want to take this opportunity to thank our customers, our business partners and our team for their hard work and on-going support. We are ready and eager to capitalize on Lolë and Coalision’s multiple opportunities.”
Lolë designs innovative, feminine and functional activewear inspired by active, engaged women around the world. This Canadian brand views well-being as a lifestyle inspired by a healthy blend of urban living, the great outdoors and physical activity. Lolë activewear is entirely designed in Montreal and is available in over 1,700 sales outlets worldwide, in Lolë Ateliers and at www.lolewomen.com
About Pelican Investment Funds
Bernard Mariette founded Pelican Investment Funds LP in 2011 alongside two partners, Beñat Errandonea and certain members of the Hermès family. The fund is specialized in lifestyle brands with a focus on the sports and apparel industry. It is comprised of about 30 shareholders including senior management of Coalision.
About Simon Equity Partners
Simon Equity Partners is the private investment arm of the Simon family, founders of Simon Property Group, the largest publicly traded real estate company in the United States. Simon Equity Partners leverages its years of retail experience and collective consumer insights to provide guidance and resources to early and expansion-stage companies.
About Kilmer Capital Partners
Kilmer Capital Partners is a $200 million fund specializing making private equity investments in small to mid-sized businesses undergoing periods of rapid growth, significant change or ownership transition.
About the Fonds de solidarité FTQ
Created in 1983, the Fonds de solidarité FTQ is a $9.7 billion development capital fund based in Quebec and has become a hub of knowledge and resources for Québec businesses and a key player in the local economy.
SOURCE Coalision Inc.
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