CD&R-Backed High Ridge Adds Reach Toothbrush Owner Dr. Fresh

The PE firm also backed Drive Devilbiss and Kalle

Personal care company High Ridge Brands, which is owned by Clayton, Dubilier & Rice, has purchased toothbrush maker Dr. Fresh for undisclosed terms. NexPhase Capital and Moelis Capital Partners are the sellers. CD&R bought High Ridge in 2016 for $415 million from Brynwood Partners.

Dr. Fresh, founded in 1998 and based in Buena Park, California, is known for making toothbrushes, flosses, rinses and travel kits under the Reach, Firefly, Dr. Fresh, Binaca and Dazzling white brands. Stamford, Connecticut-based High Ridge owns the Zest, Alberto VO5, White Rain, Coast and Rave personal and hair care brands.

High Ridge says Dr. Fresh is attractive because the target has an asset-light operating model that can withstand economic cycles. “In today’s economy, consumers are looking for ways to stretch their budgets without compromising quality and performance,” says High Ride CEO James Daniels.

CD&R is a New York-based private equity that focuses on the consumer and healthcare sectors. In 2016, the firm invested in wheelchair maker Drive DeVilbiss Healthcare and sausage casings producer Kalle GmbH.

William Blair & Co. advised the sellers. Kaye Scholer LLP represented Dr. Fresh. Holland & Knight LLP and Debevoise & Plimpton LLP represented High Ridge. BMO Capital Markets provided financing.


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