Audax Private Equity has acquired RelaDyne, a fuel and lubricant distributor, from the AEA Investors LP family office. Reladyne, based in Cincinnati, sells lubricants, fuel and diesel exhaust fluids, and it provides related services for industrial and commercial businesses in the U.S.

RelaDyne was formed in 2010 with the financial backing of AEA Investors, combining Mid-Town Petroleum Inc. of Bridgeview, Illinois; Oil Distributing Co. of Cincinnati, Ohio; the Hurt Co. Inc. of Houston; and Pumpelly Oil Company of Sulphur, Louisiana, and in 2014 it acquired Turbo Filtration Corp. Since its formation, RelaDyne has completed more than 20 acquisitions, and it now has more than 40 locations in 45 states and 22 countries. The distributor has more than 750 employees.

With Audax’s backing, RelaDyne will focus on “aggressively growing through acquisitions and organically,” Reladyne reports. “We are proud of the business we have built over the last six years, but we are just getting started,” says Jeff Hart, a RelaDyne founder and head of M&A. “With this new partnership with Audax, we’ll be able to significantly increase our M&A activities.”

AEA Investors is a New York-based private investment firm focused on middle-market private equity and debt investments. The firm represents a network of more than 75 industrial families, business executives and former government leaders, with about $10 billion in invested and committed capital in leveraged buyouts of middle-market companies and small businesses, and mezzanine and senior debt investments.

Audax is a middle-market private equity firm based in Boston, with more than $3.5 billion invested in 98 platform and 494 add-on companies. Audax Group, the parent entity for Audax Private Equity, recently raised a $1.2 billion fund for mezzanine debt investments, its fourth. Audax Private Equity closed on more than 100 investments in 2015, including its 500th deal overall. The PE firm won 2015 Private Equity Firm of the Year for the M&A Mid-Market Awards.

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