Auxo Investment Partners has acquired New Orleans-based MG, a dry barge transportation and logistics company. No financial terms were disclosed.
December 6, 2017 (Grand Rapids, Mich.) — Private equity firm Auxo Investment Partners (www.auxopartners.com) announced today that it has acquired M/G Transport Services (MG), a leading dry barge transportation and logistics company. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
Founded in 1967 and based in New Orleans, MG specializes in inland barge transportation carrying a broad array of non-hazardous dry bulk cargo. The company has a fleet of 250 covered and open hopper barges servicing a territory that stretches from Houston to Mobile, Ala., and from the mouth of the Mississippi River upstream as far as Baton Rouge, La.
Barge industry veteran Jack Lordo and the entire management team will continue in their leadership roles with Lordo serving as MG’s CEO. All current employees will remain with the company. Additionally, John Binion, another inland barge industry veteran, will serve as Auxo’s operating partner and a board member.
“We’re excited to work with MG’s impressive veteran management team, which has made the company a leader in the inland barge transportation industry,” said Auxo Managing Partner Jeff Helminski. “We see strong potential for growing the fleet and continuing MG’s leading record of service and safety to its existing customers.”
“MG’s unique business model offers limited exposure to macroeconomic cycles with long-term contracts and stable products and customers, which makes it a perfect fit with our long-term investment strategy,” said Auxo Managing Partner Fred Tedori. “We look forward to supporting the company’s existing customers and exploring new growth opportunities.”
“As we at MG celebrate our company’s 50th anniversary, we’re pleased to begin this partnership with Auxo,” Lordo said. “We’ve been extremely impressed by the credentials and collaborative approach of the veteran investors and business operators who founded Auxo, and it will be a great fit for our company and a seamless transition for our customers and our staff.”
A Strong Close to 2017
The acquisition is Auxo’s third in the past few months, as the firm announced its purchase of Atlas Die LLC and Bernal LLC, two market leaders in the die manufacturing industry with long histories in the Midwest, in September 2017. Like MG, those companies meet the criteria that Auxo’s leaders outlined when they founded the company.
“MG is an excellent long-term investment, given its rich history and experienced team of industry veterans who know the business and enjoy working together,” said Auxo Managing Partner Jack Kolodny. “With a low-leverage balance sheet in place, MG is positioned as a long-term hold for Auxo that generates tremendous cashflow. At Auxo, we work hard every day to maintain the legacy of our portfolio companies, their owners and team members while being stewards of our investors’ capital.”
Advisors on the transaction included Miller Johnson, Barnes & Thornburg, BDO, PNC Bank, Aon, Advantage Benefits, Krauter and Company and RBC Capital Markets.
A Long-Term, Collaborative Approach
Helminski, Kolodny and Fred Tedori, all veteran investors and operators, founded Auxo with an investor-centric business model and a commitment to integrating environmental, social and governance concerns (ESG) into their investment practices. The firm’s capital comes from a select group of Founding Partners who invest not only in its portfolio companies, but in the firm itself. That ownership structure, along with a heightened commitment to partnership and transparency, provides unprecedented alignment of interests between Auxo’s managers and investors.
Auxo was named after the ancient Greek goddess of growth and the firm seeks to partner with companies that meet the following investment criteria:
• North America-based
• Manufacturing, industrial, value-added distribution or business services industries
• EBITDA (cash flow) of $1.5-$15 million
• Owner-operators seeking retirement or family succession planning solutions; or existing teams seeking to grow their businesses
• Prefer majority-control investments but will consider select minority-partner opportunities
Auxo’s flexible capital model allows for long-term growth oriented decision-making without artificial deadlines. The structure was specifically designed for family businesses facing a generational hand-off or seeking outside capital or partners to fuel growth.
About Auxo Investment Partners
Auxo Investment Partners is a Grand Rapids, Mich.-based private investment firm that partners with owners and management teams of companies at transition points in their history. Auxo works to instill the infrastructure, processes and talent needed to help them grow to their full potential with a long-term investment approach. Auxo’s unique philosophy aligns the interests of its companies, their employees, the communities in which they are located and its investors to achieve optimal outcomes for all. As our name reflects, we are not merely investors, but partners.
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