Superior Activewear purchased by Gildan Inc.



Our Client – The Vendor

Superior Activewear (“SAW”) was a market leading importer & national distributor of premium printable apparel, which it supplied to a wide range of Australian wholesalers as well as to online resellers. Founded in 2004, the Business quickly attained a dominant position in the domestic supply of printable t-shirts, building a customer-base of +2,700 on-sellers. The Business’s strengths lay in its stable of globally recognised brands, for whom it acted as the sole Australian distributor, and in its highly efficient distribution infrastructure. Streamlined web-based ordering and just-in-time warehousing & logistics combined to provide customers with the product quality and fast turnaround times demanded in the events, promotional merchandise, and workwear sectors amongst others. Modern warehousing facilities stocked over 1,000,000 t-shirts, with capacity for additional growth. Run under management, the Business featured an impressive growth record and strong revenues.

After more than 30 years in the industry and ready to transition into retirement, the Directors engaged Johnsons Corporate as specialised mid-market business brokers to assist with a national divestment campaign. Having positioned the Business for further growth, the owners sought a strategic trade buyer capable of leading the Business on its next phase of development.

The International Sales Strategy

For potential acquirers this represented a highly successful enterprise, generating strong year-on-year sales growth and offering sophisticated national distribution capabilities. It presented a rare opportunity to leverage a trusted brand, premium product range and loyal customer-base into new product and market segments.

Johnsons Corporate’s custom research and marketing focused on Australian Promotional Goods wholesalers as a primary market. Related markets comprised other wholesale sectors, including Textiles, Clothing, Footwear and General Wholesalers as well as a selective shortlist of private equity & financial buyers. Johnsons ran a proactive direct marketing campaign that uncovered 28 qualified, interested parties. Further vetting and negotiations resulted in the selection of a preferred buyer as well as a backup buyer, with Offer and Acceptance secured within 16 weeks of going to market.

(Read more about how using a Specialised Mid-Market Business Broker Approach to selling your business could get you a better outcome – just like our client).

The Related Traded Buyer

The purchaser was the major supplier to the Business. Gildan Ltd is a world leader in clothing manufacturing, headquartered in Canada and managing a diversified portfolio of company-owned brands. It owns and operates a number of large-scale manufacturing facilities and distributes its products to global markets through both retail and printwear channels. This acquisition presented an opportunity to establish a directly controlled distribution foothold in the Australian marketplace.

What Our Client Had to Say

"After a careful selection process, we decided to appoint Johnsons Corporate to run a sale process for us... Their process and effort were key to the success of the sale. What developed into a more complex transaction, with a related publicly-listed overseas buyer, was handled in a most professional and efficient manner."

Donovan Callaghan - Superior Activewear