Winners in Depth
Blue Sage Capital
And the 2012 Winners Are...
William Blair's Mark Brady and the other award winners triumphed in a challenging year
Mergers & Acquisitions has announced the winners of its sixth annual M&A Mid-Market Awards. The awards honor the leading dealmakers and the deals that set the standard for transactions with an enterprise value of less than $1 billion.
Dealmaker of the Year honors were bestowed on Mark Brady, global head of M&A for William Blair & Co. The editors cited the 20-year veteran for delivering premium valuations, including the sale of TMW Systems Inc., which gave owner Pamlico Capital a return of 11 times its original investment. Pamlico partner Walker Simmons called Brady a “master at knowing what to do when the final bids come in.”
The Riverside Co. was recognized as Private Equity Firm of the Year. Riverside put up record numbers in 2012 — its 36 acquisitions and 14 exits included the firm's 300th transaction in its history. The private equity firm also fared well in fundraising, enjoying the first close on two new funds.
Starbucks Corp.’s $620 million purchase of Teavana Holdings Inc. was recognized as Deal of the Year. With Teavana, Starbucks hopes to forge a whole new consumer culture focused on tea, as it did with coffee decades ago.
This year’s honorees, which are chosen by the editors of Mergers & Acquisitions, all stood out for their ability to thrive despite industry headwinds. Winners of the M&A Mid-Market Awards delivered success stories in a year that saw deal activity shrink in value and volume terms from the previous year. Every one of our honorees offers proof that even in tough markets, execution and vision can prevail.
In addition, Mergers & Acquisitions recognized the following firms:
• Blue Sage Capital as Seller of the Year. Its sale of R360 Environmental Solutions Inc. to Waste Connection for $1.3 billion scored 63 times its original investment.
• Covidien plc as Strategic Buyer of the Year. The medical equipment and supply company’s aggressive dealmaking netted half a dozen acquisitions in fast-growing categories.
• Harris Williams & Co. as Investment Bank of the Year. During a down year for overall M&A, the boutique investment bank grew 60% in deal value and 50% in deal volume over 2011.
• Madison Capital Funding LLC as Lender of the Year. The firm expanded its innovative managed-account offerings, which allowed it to increase its hold sizes and attracted a valuable new partner in Apollo Investment Corp.
• K&L Gates LLP as Law Firm of the Year. K&L had an impressive year, particularly on the international front as it advised on cross-border transactions and struck a merger deal of its own with Middletons in Australia.
About the M&A Mid-Market Awards
To be eligible for Mergers & Acquisitions’ M&A Mid-Market Awards, deals must have closed during the previous year, involved a U.S.-based company as either buyer or seller and be valued at or below roughly $1 billion. Nominations are encouraged, but not required, and are due the second Friday in January. Special consideration is given to such factors as performance, growth, innovation and thought leadership. Past winners include Advent International, Moelis & Co., Fifth Street Capital, Golub Capital, GE Capital, Jones Day, Sullivan & Cromwell, Amgen, eBay Inc., Hewlett-Packard Co., Oracle Corp., 3M Co., and Thermo Fisher Scientific.