CLEVELAND, OHIO – Cleveland private equity firm CapitalWorks announced today the sale of its portfolio company, Bluffton Motor Works, to WEG S.A. Bluffton Motor Works is a leading manufacturer of sub-five horsepower motors that power a wide variety of applications throughout the world. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
CapitalWorks originally acquired Bluffton in 2006 and subsequently recapitalized it in 2010 and 2014. The original transaction was a corporate carve-out from Franklin Electric Corporation (NASDAQ: FELE). “Recruiting an Advisory Board of industry veterans including alumni from Reliance Electric, Rockwell, RELTEC, LEESON and Lincoln Electric enabled CapitalWorks to recruit David Nussear as CEO, and set the strategy to more than double the size of the business,” said CapitalWorks Managing Partner and Chairman Rob McCreary. The firm supported a number of strategic investments including the acquisitions of Toledo Gear Motor in 2011, Electric Motors North in 2012 and RAE Corporation in 2013 as well as the greenfield launch of a motor designed to serve the pool market in 2014.
“This is a great example of CapitalWorks’ approach to building businesses in partnership with a world-class management team,” said CapitalWorks Partner Todd Martin, who led the investment for CapitalWorks.
David Nussear, Bluffton Motor Works CEO commented, “CapitalWorks has been a great partner to us during their ownership. They have allowed us to build Bluffton and position the company as the dominant domestic manufacturer of fractional horsepower motors. We are equally excited about our new partners at WEG, who are eager to invest in North America.”
CapitalWorks was advised by Baird Investment Bank.