The local M&A market is closing out 2014 with a bang.
A trio of deals involving local companies has closed in recent weeks, including a massive acquisition of a Henrico County firm that was announced on Wednesday.
Royall & Co., a 25-year-old firm that provides direct marketing services to colleges and universities, has struck a deal to be purchased by The Advisory Board Co. for $850 million.
The transaction includes $750 million in cash and $100 million in Advisory Board stock. The Washington, D.C.-based company is publicly traded.
Once the deal closes as expected in January, Royall & Co. CEO John Nester will stay on and continue to the lead the company. The Royall & Co. brand will remain, as will its Parham Road office complex and its 350 employees. The company held a meeting with its employees Wednesday evening to explain the announcement.
Mark Hubbard of McGuireWoods Consulting, who spoke on behalf of Royall & Co., said the company’s leadership would not comment beyond its prepared statements released Wednesday.
Royall & Co. was founded in 1989 by well-known local businessman and philanthropist Bill Royall. It helps colleges and universities with communication products to increase enrollment and alumni fundraising. It has grown to have a client list of 350 schools.
Bill Royall has stepped back from the day-to-day operations in recent years after the company took on private equity investors. He is currently the company’s chairman. He’ll serve in an advisory role for a time following the deal with The Advisory Board.
The Advisory Board provides consulting and other services to hospitals, and it has a higher education arm that Royall & Co. will complement.
Materials released by the company on Wednesday said its revenue combined with that of Royall’s was $664 million for the 12 months ending Sept. 30. Royall & Co. accounted for $109 million of that total.
Investment banking firms Barclays and Kirkland & Ellis are advising Royall and its shareholders in the deal.
Over in the world of human resources, locally based Titan Group found a suitor last month.
The West End HR consulting firm was acquired by Illinois-based insurance brokerage Arthur J. Gallagher & Co. Terms of the Nov. 13 deal were not disclosed.
Titan Group co-founder Lee Weisiger said the deal came about as Gallagher & Co. was looking to grow its consulting practice through an acquisition.
“We’re probably the only fully diversified consulting firm in the area,” Weisiger said. “You could find other small firms that do pieces of what we do, but not everything we do.”
Weisiger said Titan Group had not been actively looking to sell the company when they were approached by Gallagher & Co. in January.
Weisiger and fellow co-founder Genevieve Roberts will stay on as managing directors. Its nine employees will also stay put, and Weisiger said having the backing of Gallagher & Co. will likely fuel expansion for Titan Group.
“We’re not going anywhere, it’s just working for a different company, essentially,” Weisiger said. “It’s all positive for Titan and its employees.”
Titan Group was founded in 2001. It’s hired by companies that need help with HR tasks like setting up compensation packages for employees. It also provides staffing for clients that need temporary and permanent workers for HR functions. Its clients include privately held firms, Fortune 500s, nonprofits and government agencies.
The local deal flow also carried across the river to the Southside last month.
Alloy Polymers, headquartered on Deepwater Terminal Road, was acquired by Minnesota-based RTP Co. in a deal that closed Nov. 20. Its terms were not disclosed.
Alloy Polymers specializes in compounding thermoplastics for industrial resins. The material is used in the automotive industry for car parts, the healthcare industry for instruments and devices and much more.
As part of the deal, RTP purchased Alloy’s three manufacturing facilities in Richmond and in Orange and Crockett, Texas. RTP had previously purchased Alloy’s plant in Gahanna, Ohio. Alloy will operate as a wholly owned subsidiary of RTP.
Alloy Polymers was founded in 1982 by Subhash and Kamini Pahuja. It relocated to Richmond in 1987 and grew over time by acquiring the facilities in Texas and Ohio and launching operations in India.
Kamini Pahuja will remain with the company temporarily as a consultant and will retain ownership of an Alloy plant in India. Pahuja could not be reached for comment.
Locally based investment banking firm Cary Street Partners represented Alloy Polymers in the deal.