SAN FRANCISCO, Aug 2, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — Gryphon Investors (“Gryphon”), a leading mid-market private equity firm, announced today that it has acquired Wittichen Supply Company (“Wittichen” or the “Company”), a wholesale distributor that provides heating, ventilation air conditioning and refrigeration (HVAC/R) equipment, parts, supplies, and customer service to residential and commercial customers in the Southeastern United States. This is the second investment closed by Gryphon’s Heritage Fund, a new small-cap fund offering launched by Gryphon in 2020. The financial terms of the transaction have not been disclosed.
Founded in 1914 and headquartered in Birmingham, AL, Wittichen provides best-in-class parts, supplies and customer service and distributes products from more than 500 leading HVAC/R manufacturers. With 25 locations, the company is the market leader in Alabama, and has a growing presence in the Florida panhandle as well as western Georgia. With a loyal customer base of technicians, the company maintains long-standing relationships with leading HVAC/R manufacturers and suppliers, including: RheemChemours, Fujitsu, Nu-Calgon and Emerson Climate Technologies.
Keith Stimson, Deal Partner and Head of the Heritage Fund team at Gryphon, said: “Our investment in Wittichen is a testament to Gryphon’s Heritage Fund strategy, which leverages Gryphon’s sector initiative strategy and focuses on partnering with industry leaders with sustainable differentiation …investments to develop a strong platform across the Sun Belt.”
General manager Charles Haring, who has been with Wittichen for 48 years, will become President of the company and will continue to work closely with the existing management team. Gryphon has also appointed several executive advisors with deep HVAC/R OEM manufacturing and industrial distribution experience to the company’s board of directors.
Craig Nikrant, Gryphon Operating Partner of the Heritage Fund team, said: “Wittichen is a 100-year-old brand with a strong culture and an exceptionally loyal employee and customer base. We look forward to working together and supporting the Wittichen management team in their next phase of growth by leveraging Gryphon’s internal Operations Resource Group and Human Capital Team to enable further investment in its business and employees.”
Mr. Herring commented: “We are delighted to welcome and work with the Gryphon team as we build on our recent growth and look to the future. We are experiencing constant demand for product repair, maintenance and improvement, and we expect that that demand will continue to grow in a post-COVID-19 environment leading to a greater need for high quality, safe air filtration.We look forward to serving our existing and new customers with the same great team, supported by the additional resources from our new partner.”
David Henderson, outgoing president of Wittichen, added: “My goal is to leave the company, our employees, customers and suppliers in the best hands, and I am confident that we have found the best partner in Gryphon. Our company is built on delivering “
Gryphon was advised by legal counsel Kirkland & Ellis and financial advisor Lincoln International. Uplift Partners was the exclusive financial advisor to Wittichen Supply Company, and Maynard Cooper Gale acted as legal advisor.
About Witticen Supply Company
Founded in 1914 and headquartered in Birmingham, AlabamaWittichen is the leading wholesale distributor providing the best HVAC/R equipment, parts, supplies and customer service at 25 locations in Alabama, Georgia, and Florida. Wittichen maintains long-standing relationships with leading suppliers and distributes products from more than 500 leading HVAC/R manufacturers. With more than 100 years of experience, Wittichen continues to provide its customers with the best service, including well-stocked branches, competitive prices and out-of-hours service for emergencies. For more information visit www.wittichen-supply.com.
About Gryphon Investors
Located in San Francisco, Gryphon investors (www.gryphoninvestors.com) is a leading private equity firm focusing on profitable growing and competitively improving mid-sized companies in partnership with experienced management. The company has succeeded $5.0 billion of equity investments and capital since 1997. Gryphon aims to make equity investments of $50 million until $300 million in portfolio companies with enterprise values ranging from approximately $100 million until $600 million. Gryphon prioritizes investment opportunities where it can form strong partnerships with owners and executives to build leading businesses, leveraging Gryphon’s capital, specialized professional resources and operational expertise.
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SOURCE Gryphon Investors