NEW YORK – Blackstone (NYSE:BX) and Wellspring Capital Management LLC (“Wellspring”) today announced that private equity funds affiliated with Blackstone have entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Tradesmen International, LLC (“Tradesmen”), the leading agency-based provider of outsourced skilled craftsmen to non-residential construction and industrial contractors in North America, from Wellspring. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
Tradesmen pioneered the concept of outsourcing skilled trade labor in the early 1990s and today is the leading national provider, serving more than 12,000 small to medium sized businesses and a growing number of leading engineering & construction firms. Tradesmen has the largest outsourced skilled craftsmen workforce in the United States.
Peter Wallace, a Senior Managing Director at Blackstone, commented, “We are excited to invest in Tradesmen, the nation’s leading provider of outsourced skilled craftsmen. We look forward to working with their outstanding management team to support their exciting growth strategy.”
David Kestnbaum, a Managing Director at Blackstone, said, “We are pleased to be partnering with Tradesmen’s strong management team and employee base to support their track record of value-added service delivery to customers. We are eager to assist the company with its ongoing growth and in supporting the continued adoption of its agency-based model across the North American market.”
Joshua Cascade, a Managing Partner of Wellspring, said, “We are very proud to have played a role in advancing Tradesmen Founder Joe Wesley’s vision to create job opportunities for skilled craftsmen and provide a proven flexible labor source for contractors. The Tradesmen organization has done an exceptional job of executing the Company’s accelerated growth strategy to further penetrate this large potential market and we wish all of Tradesmen’s employees and craftsmen every success in the future.”
Michael S. Webster, CEO of Tradesmen, said, “We are very appreciative of Wellspring’s and Joe Wesley’s support for Tradesmen’s strong recent growth plan execution, and look forward to partnering with Blackstone to drive our next phase of expansion while continuing to deliver high-quality service levels to our broad customer base.”
The transaction is expected to close in the first quarter.
Robert W. Baird & Co and Rothschild are acting as financial advisors to Tradesmen with respect to the transaction, and Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP is acting as Tradesmen’s legal counsel. Deutsche Bank is acting as financial advisor to Blackstone with respect to the transaction, and Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP is acting as Blackstone’s legal counsel.
Tradesmen is the leading agency-based provider of outsourced skilled craftsmen to non-residential construction and industrial contractors in North America, offering the best, safety-minded skilled craftsmen across a national office network. Across Tradesmen’s national office network, industry recruitment experts with multiple years of construction experience identify and screen top craftsmen who are reliable, verifiably skilled and safety-minded. Each is thoroughly vetted and provided with safety training upon hire. For more information, please visit www.tradesmeninternational.com.
Blackstone is one of the world’s leading investment firms. We seek to create positive economic impact and long-term value for our investors, the companies in which we invest, and the communities in which we work. We do this by using extraordinary people and flexible capital to help companies solve problems. Our asset management businesses, with over $360 billion in assets under management, include investment vehicles focused on private equity, real estate, public debt and equity, non-investment grade credit, real assets and secondary funds, all on a global basis. Further information is available at www.blackstone.com. Follow Blackstone on Twitter @Blackstone.
About Wellspring Capital Management
Wellspring Capital Management, founded in 1995, is a leading middle-market private equity firm that manages more than $3 billion of private equity capital. The firm’s objective is to bring partnership, experience and value creation to each investment. By teaming up with strong management, Wellspring is able to unlock underlying value and pursue new growth opportunities through strategic initiatives, operating improvements and add-on acquisitions. The firm functions as a strategic rather than tactical partner, providing management teams with top-line support, M&A experience and financial expertise, and access to resources.
Director of Marketing and Communications
Public Affairs, Blackstone
Mark Semer or Ross Lovern