Kohlberg picks up Nike division for $200m

The head of Roustan Capital has teamed up with Jerome Kohlberg’s investment firm to purchase non-core Nike division Bauer Hockey.

Kohlberg & Company and Graeme Roustan, the Canadian founder of US private equity firm Roustan Capital, will pay $200 million (€136 million) for Bauer Hockey, an 81-year old brand acquired in 1995 by Nike for roughly $395 million.

The division has annual revenue of about $160 million and is being divested as Nike strategically reviews all its subsidiary brands. Nike said it expects the transaction to complete before the end of its fiscal year. Specific deal terms were not disclosed.

Graeme Roustan

“Bauer is the most coveted hockey brand in the world, dating back to 1927, and is a big part of hockey’s DNA,” said Roustan in a statement. “It is a personal honour and privilege to have the opportunity to work with the existing dedicated team of professionals at Bauer and support this great company’s continued industry leadership well into the future.”

Roustan will become chairman of the company, which is credited with developing the first-ever hockey skate with the blade attached to the boot.

Post-transaction, Bauer will continue to use the Nike Bauer Hockey trademark on existing products for up to two years.
Lazard was Nike’s financial advisor, while Tonkon Torp was its legal advisor. Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison provided legal advice to Kohlberg & Co. and Roustan.

Kohlberg & Company is currently investing its sixth fund, which via several closings in 2007 has raised $1.5 billion.