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L Catterton To Acquire West Marine

L Catterton, the private equity firm, announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement under which L Catterton will acquire a controlling interest in West Marine, the nation’s leading retailer in the marine aftermarket, from Monomoy Capital Partners.

Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Founded in 1968, West Marine supports the boating, fishing, sailing and watersports markets in the U.S. With 237 physical locations across 38 states and Puerto Rico and two e-commerce platforms reaching domestic, international, and professional customers, West Marine’s customer base includes cruisers, sailors, anglers, and watersports enthusiasts. In partnership with L Catterton, West Marine plans to continue to optimize its marine centers; fast-track the advancement of its digital content, commerce, and community capabilities; and deliver strong value to customers.

Marc Magliacano, a managing partner in L Catterton’s Flagship Fund, said, “As the established leader, West Marine is incredibly well-positioned in the marine aftermarket, and we are excited to support the Company as it expands its omni-channel offerings and further cements its leadership across the country. West Marine has moved beyond its heritage as a retailer and is a highly trusted marine specialist and resource for boating enthusiasts. By leveraging our firm’s experience building enthusiast brands, we will be able to accelerate West Marine’s advanced omni-channel capabilities and enhance its consumer engagement, while creating an industry defining digital experience. West Marine will use its scale, product breadth, and expert field associates to service all the needs of consumers seeking an exceptional on water experience.”

“We are thrilled to be partnering with L Catterton in the next phase of growth for West Marine,” said Ken Seipel, CEO of West Marine. “The L Catterton team brings invaluable consumer, brand building, and digital expansion expertise to help us accelerate our growth plans. In partnership, we look forward to enhancing our digital capabilities and elevating our consumer experience to not only provide the broadest product offering in the industry, but also to deliver the most comprehensive and rewarding consumer experience no matter where or how our boaters choose to engage with us. We look forward to our partnership with L Catterton.”

“The U.S. marine aftermarket industry is a fundamentally attractive category benefiting from favorable consumer tailwinds including long-term growth in boating for leisure and time spent with family, higher focus on outdoor lifestyle activities including water sports and fishing, and the rise of boat-sharing clubs bringing more people into the category,” said Matt Lischick, Partner at L Catterton. “We expect the aftermarket to continue its consistent secular growth based on the growing installed boat base and rising boating participation. West Marine stands out as the leader in the category and we look forward to partnering with Ken and his proven leadership team to further build the Company’s authority as the go-to, consumer-centric marine aftermarket player.”

L Catterton has significant experience investing in enthusiast consumer brands including Leslie’s, Airxcel, Truck Hero, Peloton, Heartland RV, and Pinarello, among others.

The transaction is expected to close in May 2021, subject to customary closing conditions. Baird is serving as financial advisor to West Marine. Kirkland & Ellis LLP is acting as legal counsel to L Catterton. Committed debt financing will be provided by Barclays Bank PLC, Golub Capital LLC, and Nomura, and Paul Hastings LLP is acting as legal counsel to such lenders.

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