THE DIVESTMENT CAMPAIGN
Our Client – The Vendor
Workforce Clothing was a long-standing and trusted supplier of high-quality industrial workwear to a variety of market sectors in WA. The Business distributed a wide range of products including its own brands, Workforce & F-Tech, as well as other reputable makes – with lines spanning shirts, jackets, overalls, pants, boots, protective equipment, and corporate & leisure attire. With its consistent focus on customer service and a competitive offering, the Business built a loyal base of repeat clients, predominantly larger national operators in the mining & resources, engineering services, civil contracting, transport, and manufacturing sectors. It was able to leverage those relationships into interstate sales and the establishment of its own infrastructure in SA and NSW.
Originally founded in 1972, Workforce was acquired by the CIL Group in 2011, a privately-owned diversified industrial products company. In 2018 CIL’s directors made a strategic decision to divest non-core assets and re-focus their energy and resources on core product lines. They engaged Johnsons to undertake a divestment campaign on their behalf, seeking a strategic acquirer with the resources to continue Workforce’s growth and development.
The Business Sales Strategy
For potential acquirers, Workforce presented a compelling proposition, as an established and leading WA supplier with a blue-chip customer base, a stable of reputable brands including proprietary product lines, strong sector diversification, and a highly capable sales & service team. Looking forward there would be multiple future growth opportunities, including the potential for further geographic expansion and the ongoing development of the own-brand product range.
Johnsons Corporate’s custom research & marketing focused on identifying Australian suppliers of industrial workwear as a primary target segment. Additionally, suppliers of personal protection equipment and corporate workwear were targeted as secondary, or related, segments . Johnsons ran a proactive direct marketing campaign that uncovered 15 qualified, interested parties. Further vetting and negotiations resulted in the selection of a preferred buyer, with Offer and Acceptance secured within 8 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 Trade Buyer
ATOM is one of Australia’s leading and fastest growing Industrial Hardware & Safety Equipment suppliers, servicing the Mining & Civil, Oil & Gas, Government, Electrical, Maintenance Repair & Operations, Commercial, Construction, Agriculture, Infrastructure & Engineering industries. This acquisition served to extend its product range as well as its geographic scale.
What Our Client Had to Say
"Our initial discussions with Johnsons Corporate led us to the conclusion, that whilst a divestment of this asset would require some 'heavy lifting' given the dynamics within the sector, with the right approach and a genuine commitment to the divestment process, an outcome could be achieved... [Later] during the ongoing and sometimes lengthy discussions with the preferred suitor, Johnsons ensured that the negotiations were handled in a calm and pragmatic fashion ensuring that relationships were maintained and ultimately the final consummation of the sale."Lindsay Mitchell, Director - Workforce Clothing