INDUSTRY: Branded pest and wildlife control products
Friend Skoler's investment in Woodstream is a textbook example of how FSC can be a value added partner to management in executing an aggressive add-on acquisition strategy. FSC partnered with senior management to acquire Woodstream from its parent company Ekco Group. At the time of acquisition, Woodstream was a leading manufacturer and marketer of branded household pest control and wildlife caring control products in the United States and Canada. Woodstream's product lines included rodent and insect traps and live animal cage traps sold under the Victor and Havahart brands.
FSC worked closely with management to identify and complete six acquisitions of complementary businesses that expanded the company's product offerings and geographic footprint, and added the broadly recognized Safer brand to the portfolio. These accretive acquisitions were completed over an eighteen month period, with FSC providing support in the areas of due diligence, contract negotiations, and arrangement of financing. FSC also helped management to organize and integrate the company's products around the Victor, Havahart and Safer brand names, with new branding strategies and product packaging.
During FSC's ownership, Woodstream's net sales increased 65% and EBITDA increased 93%. In June 2003 FSC sold Woodstream to an affiliate of Brockway Moran & Partners, Inc. for approximately $100 million. The sale generated cash returns of 3.4x invested capital for FSC and its investors during their three and one-half years of ownership, generating an internal rate of return of approximately 40%.