MidOcean buys sports outfitter from Wind Point

New York-based MidOcean Partners has provided Chicago-based Wind Point with a profitable exit from outdoor accessories company Bushnell Outdoor Products.

New York-based MidOcean Partners has bought Bushnell Outdoor Products from Chicago-based Wind Point Partners for an undisclosed amount.

Wind Point purchased Bushnell in 1999, when the company was Bushnell Performance Optics, for $60 million. Although the financial terms of the sale to MidOcean were not disclosed, Wind Point principle and former Bushnell director Salam Chaudhary told PrivateEquityOnline that Wind Point’s exit was profitable.

While Wind Point held Bushnell, it added on three companies, including two eyewear companies, Bolle and Serengeti Eyewear, and a hunting accessories company, Michael’s of Oregon. Wind Point also acquired the name and intellectual property of Tasco, under which it began producing binoculars and riflescopes.

The second prong of Wind Point’s strategy was the reinvigoration of Bushnell’s new product development, Chaundhary said, which included the production of new laser rangefinders and handheld GPS devices.

MidOcean plans to continue Wind Point’s strategy, growing Bushnell organically and through acquisitions. MidOcean will look to make Bushnell dominant in the shooting and hunting accessories market, according to MidOcean partner Robert Sharp.

“Bushnell brand and the other brands that Bushnell owns are really the greatest brands in the outdoor consumer space,” Sharp said. “Their sector dominance gives them an advantage over their competitors.”

GE Antares Capital provided committed financing for the deal. Kirkland & Ellis was legal counsel for MidOcean and Reed Smith was legal counsel to Bushnell and Wind Point.

MidOcean Partners focuses on middle market investments in the consumer and leisure, media and communication, business and financial services and industrials sectors. Its most recent acquisition was the purchase of the Hunter Fan Company from Lehman Brothers Merchant Banking Group. The firm manages $3 billion in capital.

Wind Point Partners managed $2 billion in capital. The firm also targets the middle market, but rather than focusing on a specific industry seeks out exceptionally strong management teams. In late June the firm completed the acquisition of Railworks Corporation, a track and transit system construction firm.