Castle Harlan in $110m deal

Working with a former portfolio company of its Australian affiliate, the New York-based private equity firm has picked up AmeriCast Technologies.

New York-based Castle Harlan has bought steel castings manufacturer AmeriCast Technologies, Inc. from another New York-based firm, KPS Special Situation Funds, for $110 million (€85 million), Castle Harlan said in a statement.

The investment involves Castle Harlan Partners IV, a $1.2 billion fund that closed in August 2003, the statement said.

AmeriCast’s management and Bradken Operations Pty. LTD, an Australian steel products manufacturer formerly owned by Castle Harlan’s Australian affiliate CHAMP, also took part in the transaction, the statement said.

Based in Atchinson, Kansas, AmeriCast produces steel castings that weigh between 10,000 and 60,000 pounds and that are used in mining trucks and locomotives, the statement said. Among its customers are Caterpillar, a manufacturer of construction and mining equipment as well as natural gas and diesel engines, Electro-Motive Diesel, a producer of diesel-electric locomotives for commercial railroad applications, and General Electric, a technology and services conglomerate.

Founded in 1987, Castle Harlan specialises in buyouts of middle-market companies in North America and Europe. Its portfolio companies include Polypipe Group, a supplier of plastic pipe systems in the UK and Ireland, Ames True Temper, a producer of lawn and garden tools, and Perkins & Marie Callendar’s, a company that runs and franchises more than 600 family restaurants in the US and Canada.

Castle Harlan and its Sydney, Australia-based affiliate CHAMP (Castle Harlan Australian Mezzanine Partners), merged several barley malting companies into one operation, United Malt Holdings, in September 2006. The companies acquired included US-based Great Western Malting and Canada Malting Company as well as Australia-based Barrett Burston Malting. Castle Harlan and CHAMP also obtained a 60 percent interest in UK-based Bairds Malt.