The Parts Alliance Group in the UK has been acquired from its private equity owner HgCapital by Uni-Select Inc., a Canadian publicly listed, North American Automotive aftermarket distributor.
New owners Uni-Select operate as a market-leader in the USA and Canada, distributing automotive aftermarket parts, equipment and refinish products through a network of 14 distribution centres, 270 corporate stores and over 1,150 independent wholesalers with 3,000 employees generating sales of $1.2 billion USD per annum.
Uni-Select is a leader in the distribution of automotive refinish and industrial paint and related products in Canada and the United States, as well as in the automotive aftermarket parts business in Canada. In Canada, Uni-Select supports over 3,900 shops and stores through a growing national network of more than 1,150 independent customers, many of which operating under Uni-Select store banner programs, and corporate stores. In the United States, Uni-Select, through its wholly-owned subsidiary FinishMaster, Inc., operates a national network of automotive refinish corporate stores under the FinishMaster banner and supports more than 6,000 collision repair centre customers.
The Parts Alliance, through a series of 10 acquisitions since 2012 has grown to become a market- leader by investing in people and technology and putting their customers first.
It is one of the leading groups of automotive parts distributors throughout the UK and Ireland. The group has a network of close to 200 locations including 161 corporate stores and supports over 23,000 customer accounts.
“This has been a fantastic journey, building a market leader in just over 4 years through 10 acquisitions and consistently strong organic growth,” said Peter Sephton. “I and our management team would like to thank HgCapital for all their support as our 2,900 colleagues look forward to continuing that journey with Uni-Select, helping build a great international autoparts business together with the Uni-Select leadership team.”
The Parts Alliance emphasise that for customers it’s very much ‘business as usual’ and look forward to working under trade owners with a deep understanding of the automotive aftermarket. The existing management team will continue to operate the business and Peter Sephton, Chief Executive of The Parts Alliance, will join Uni-Select’s executive team while continuing his leadership role in the UK as President and CEO of the European business segment.
Uni-Select’s origins are similar to those of The Parts Alliance; Uni-Select . was founded in 1968 by 12 Québec businessmen who joined forces to form a purchasing group for aftermarket parts. The business now trade as a listed company on the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX: UNS).
“We are excited to establish a third growth pillar in the large UK parts aftermarket that is expected to be immediately accretive in a market with great upside potential from future consolidation opportunities. Parts Alliance is a great organization, with a market leadership position and national scale, a proven growth platform and an experienced management team that has demonstrated its ability to drive profitable growth both organically and through acquisitions,” said Henry Buckley, President and CEO of Uni-Select. “Our two companies are a perfect fit in terms of business profile, customer focus, entrepreneurial culture and commitment to people development.”
Martin Block, Partner, HgCapital, said: “We are delighted with the sale of this very special business to Uni-Select. They will be a fantastic partner for the next phase of Parts Alliance’s continued growth and development. As a buy and build in a fragmented and dynamic sector, our management team were able to create a business of scale and real capability through their drive, professionalism and determination. The Parts Alliance brings together a high-quality group of distinct brands with a common culture and local identity. We wish both the team and the new owners every success for the future”.