Our Client – The Buyer
Headquartered in Perth, Paramount Safety Products is the name behind the well-known Prochoice brand of industrial safety gear. Servicing Australian and overseas customers for over 20 years, the Business acts as a manufacturer and distributor of personal protective equipment (“PPE”), which it supplies to a wide range of industry sectors. By 2015 Paramount was the third largest wholesaler/supplier of PPE in Australia – turning over +$50 million and operating a national network of warehouses located in WA, NSW, VIC, QLD as well as New Zealand.
Aiming to position Paramount as a leading Australian, one-stop supplier of quality industrial products – distributed throughout ANZ and exported across the Pacific Rim and beyond – the board of directors determined the Business should pursue future growth through strategic acquisitions. Specifically it mandated the diversification of the product range in addition to broadening the customer base and increasing revenues. Being well aware of the pitfalls of managing acquisitions internally, Paramount’s directors sought advisors to undertake an acquisition campaign on their behalf. They engaged Johnsons as specialist mid-market business brokers to provide expert assistance, covering the identification and qualification of suitable targets, the management of price expectations, and the strict oversight of the exchange of information between multiple stakeholders.
The Acquisition Strategy
Johnsons worked to a clear acquisition brief. The ideal target was a business that would allow Paramount to leverage its national infrastructure and management team, while diversifying its product offering. Specific target attributes included: exposure to the industrial products sector, a portfolio of long-term customers, experienced management and staff, and a turnover range of $2M to $20M.
Custom research & marketing spanned a number of sectors complementary to Paramount’s core focus on Industrial Personal Protection Gear. Johnsons ran a proactive direct marketing campaign that uncovered 19 qualified, off-market acquisition targets. Further vetting and negotiations with a shortlist of preferred targets resulted in the execution of an Agreed Terms Sheet between the buyer and its top target.
The Acquired Target
Established over 40 years ago and based in Victoria, Pratt Safety Systems is a private, Australian family-owned business. For this well-known supplier of industrial safety goods, being acquired offered the Business access to national distribution infrastructure. In turn it could offer the purchaser a loyal customer base and complementary product range, including: dangerous goods safety cabinets, emergency showers & eye wash stations, spill containment, stormwater management, gas cylinder storage cages, and safety signs.
What Our Client Had to Say
"Within a very short space of time, Johnsons Corporate was able to identify and bring forward a number of “off market” acquisition opportunities, for our consideration. Once suitable targets were confirmed, their ability to organise information, facilitate meaningful discussions and ultimately gain traction was clearly evident. Following an extensive review of a number of targets, Johnsons Corporate worked closely with the board of Paramount Safety, to successfully negotiate and complete the acquisition, which represented an ideal fit for our diversification objectives."Tim Bird, Director - Paramount Safety Products