Private equity firm High Road Capital Partners has acquired U-C Coatings LLC, a New York-based manufacturer of specialty coatings and sealants. The PE firm teamed up with chemical industry professional Jeff Leone, who previously served as CEO of coatings distributor Rutland Group, to evaluate the investment opportunity. Private equity firms are increasingly seeking out operating partners to work with companies they acquire.

Founded in 1971, U-C Coatings makes wood protection products and end paints for the hardwood market across North America. The target is headquartered in Buffalo, New York and also operates seven third-party logistics facilities. Anchorseal, Gempaoint and Sealonce are among U-C Coatings premiere products.

“U-C Coatings, with its market leadership in wood protection, is ideally positioned for expansion,” states High Road partner Jeffrey Goodrich. “Wood protection practices are progressively being adopted both in North America and other wood-producing regions. In addition, exports of North American hardwoods are growing. We see an immediate opportunity to expand U-C Coatings’ distribution globally.”

High Road, formed in 2007, is a lower middle-market private equity firm with more than $470 million in committed capital raised. The PE firm backs companies generating revenues between $10 million and $100 million. High Road targets investments involving manufacturing, media, healthcare and distribution companies. In February 2017, High Road bought Midwest Wholesale Hardware Co. The firm has completed 41 transactions since its inception.

Coating companies continue to attract buyer interest. TA Associates backed coatings supplier Ideal Cures Private Limited; Axalta Coating Systems Ltd. (NYSE: AXTA) has purchased Netherlands distributor Geeraets Autolak; Audax Private Equity-backed Innovative Chemical Products (ICP) bought adhesives maker Fomo Products Inc.; and PPG (NYSE: PPG) is acquiring MetoKote Corp.

U-C Coatings LLC
Kamaron Leach

Kamaron Leach

Kamaron Leach joined SourceMedia in 2016, serving as Reporter of Mergers & Acquisitions. Kamaron writes the Finance Finesse column about investment banking and lending, and also covers the media and entertainment sector.