Wynnchurch Capital‘s newly formed portfolio company, Heligear Acquisition has acquired Northstar Aerospace and its subsidiaries through court administered insolvency proceedings in both the United States and Canada. Headquartered in the Chicago suburb of Bedford Park, Illinois, the business is a manufacturer of flight-critical and non-flight-critical parts for military and commercial aircraft applications.
Wynnchurch Capital (“Wynnchurch”), a leading middle-market private equity firm, announced today that its newly formed portfolio company, Heligear Acquisition Holdings Co. (together with its subsidiaries, the “Company”), has acquired substantially all of the operating assets of Northstar Aerospace, Inc. and its subsidiaries (together, “NSA”) through court administered insolvency proceedings in both the United States and Canada. Headquartered in the Chicago suburb of Bedford Park, Illinois, the Company is a leading manufacturer of flight-critical and non-flight-critical parts for military and commercial aircraft applications. The Company will continue to operate under the “Northstar Aerospace” name and employ substantially the entire NSA workforce. Prior to the acquisition, NSA was publically traded on the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX:NSA).
“The message for our customers, suppliers and employees is that Northstar Aerospace is stronger than ever and we are committed to working closely with all key constituents to improve service levels and lower costs for our customers. We are excited and honored to be a key partner supplier for leading global military aircraft programs, including the AH-64 Apache Block III, the CH-47 Chinook and the UH-60 Black Hawk. We are proud to be able to support our customers and warfighters around the world,” said Dave McConnaughey, the Company’s new President and CEO.
Terry Theodore, Partner with Wynnchurch, said, “Northstar is a leader and innovator in the aerospace industry and has a decades-old reputation for providing the highest quality products to its customers. We look forward to partnering with Dave McConnaughey and the rest of the Northstar management team to continue driving improvements in the business.” Ian Kirson, Managing Director with Wynnchurch, added, “We continue to be impressed by Northstar’s leading proprietary manufacturing technology, dedicated, trained and skilled workforce, as well as proven product performance and durability. The investment in Northstar strengthens our position in the Aerospace and Defense sector, an increasingly attractive sector that requires proven security and operational controls for the manufacture of high precision military and commercial aircraft parts.”
The Company recently received confirmation of its role as the single source supplier of Face Gear transmission components for The Boeing Company’s AH-64 Apache Block lll program. This program has recently been approved for full rate production. Also in recent news, Rolls-Royce announced the renewal of its long standing manufacturing agreements for the manufacture of precision aircraft gearing for both military and commercial aircraft. The Company supplies product and manufacturing support to Rolls-Royce in connection with these renewed agreements. The Company is also a key supplier to GE Aviation, Honeywell Aerospace, United Technologies’ Sikorsky Aircraft and other leading aerospace OEMs.
Senior debt financing to support the acquisition was provided by PNC Business Credit, a division of PNC Bank, National Association. Alvarez & Marsal served as transaction advisor to Wynnchurch and Vedder Price P.C. acted as legal counsel to Wynnchurch and the Company.
About the Company: Headquartered in the Chicago suburb of Bedford Park, Illinois, the Company is a leading manufacturer of flight-critical and non-flight-critical parts for military and commercial aircraft applications. The Company provides a broad base of complex and highly engineered products including gears, housings, assemblies and shafts for helicopter transmission systems. The Company has strong, long-term relationships with key OEMs in the aerospace and defense industry and enjoys an exclusive position on two key defense helicopter programs.
About Wynnchurch Capital: Wynnchurch Capital, Ltd., headquartered in the Chicago suburb of Rosemont, Illinois with offices in Dallas, Detroit, and Toronto and an affiliate office in Montreal, was founded in 1999 and is a leading middle-market private equity investment firm. Wynnchurch’s strategy is to partner with middle market companies in the United States and Canada which have outstanding management teams and possess the potential for substantial growth and profit improvement. Wynnchurch manages a number of private equity funds with capital under management in excess of $1 billion specializing in management buyouts, recapitalizations, corporate carve-outs, restructurings and growth capital.
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