Trimaran sells safety products to Odyssey

In a $495m deal, New York’s Odyssey Investment Partners will acquire Norcross Safety Products from Trimaran Capital Partners, John Hancock Life Insurance Company and CIVC Partners.

New York buyout firm Odyssey Investment Partners has agreed to acquire safety products maker Norcross from a group of investors including Trimaran Capital Partners, John Hancock Life Insurance Company and Chicago’s CIVC Partners for $495 million (€394 million).
 
Based in Oak Brook, Illinois, Norcross makes protective equipment for the industrial and utility markets. The company’s products include respiratory protection, protective footwear, hand protection and related products under the brands North, Morning Pride and W.H. Salisbury. Norcross generated worldwide revenues of $440 million in 2004.
 
Norcross president and CEO Robert Peterson will continue at the helm of the company. 

Global demand for protective equipment has grown dramatically in recent years as regulation and industry standards become more stringent in an increasingly safety conscious society.

Brian Kwait, managing partner,
Odyssey Investment Partners

Brian Kwait, a managing principal of Odyssey, said in a statement: “Global demand for protective equipment has grown dramatically in recent years as regulation and industry standards become more stringent in an increasingly safety conscious society.”

Trimaran, an affiliate of CIBC World Markets, is led by Jay Bloom, a vice chairman of CIBC and co-head of the CIBC Argosy Merchant Banking Funds.
 
Mr. Peterson said: ’This transaction is a positive development for Norcross at a time of continued expansion for our company.  Odyssey has a long track record of partnering with management teams to build companies for the benefit of customers, employees and shareholders, and we share a common vision for the future of Norcross and our business units.  We are very appreciative of the support and guidance our existing partners have given us and look forward to working with Odyssey to continue to build on our accomplishments and leadership in high-growth markets.’
 
Bloom said in the statement: “Since we made our investment, the company has grown from $38 million in revenues to $440 million and a position of global leadership.”
 
The acquisition of Norcross will be the third investment in Odyssey Investment Partners Fund III, a $750 million private equity fund Odyssey closed in March 2005. The firm also has an office in Los Angeles.