Oak Hill Capital Partners to Acquire Safe Fleet

Belton, MO – January 9, 2018 – Safe Fleet Holdings, LLC (“Safe Fleet” or “the Company”), the market-leading provider of safety and productivity solutions for fleet vehicles, announced today that it has entered into a definitive agreement to be acquired by Oak Hill Capital Partners (“Oak Hill”). Under the terms of the agreement, Oak Hill will acquire the Company from its current owner, The Sterling Group (“Sterling”).

“We have tremendous respect for what Safe Fleet has accomplished. The Company has built a unique and growing portfolio of market-leading safety and productivity solutions,” said Brian Cherry, a Partner at Oak Hill. “We are excited to partner with Safe Fleet to support the Company through its next phase of development, as it continues to grow both organically and through strategic acquisitions.”

John Rachwalski, a Partner at Oak Hill, added, “Safe Fleet represents an exceptional opportunity to invest in a leader in specialized, niche markets supported by attractive secular tailwinds. We are delighted to work with the Company’s talented management team to continue to build the Safe Fleet platform.”

“Sterling and a strong management team led by John Knox have transformed the business strategically, operationally, and commercially from two small component suppliers to a leader in safety solutions for fleet vehicles,” said Gary Rosenthal, a Partner at Sterling and Chairman of Safe Fleet’s Board of Directors. “The creation and sale of Safe Fleet, a business that didn’t exist before Sterling’s initial acquisitions, is a case study in how Sterling rapidly implements its improvement strategies to build winning businesses.”

“Sterling and the Safe Fleet team successfully executed our shared vision to create a leading safety solutions company serving an expanding group of fleet customers,” said John Knox, President and Chief Executive Officer of Safe Fleet. “We believe our new partnership with Oak Hill, a firm that shares our culture of collaborative engagement and continuous improvement, will even further accelerate Safe Fleet’s growth trajectory as a highly differentiated safety and productivity solutions platform.”

The transaction is expected to close in the first quarter of 2018 and represents the seventh investment in the Oak Hill Capital Partners IV portfolio.

UBS Investment Bank served as financial advisor to Oak Hill in connection with the transaction. Goldman Sachs Bank USA, UBS Securities LLC, and Morgan Stanley Senior Funding, Inc. have underwritten and will arrange first and second lien financing in connection with the transaction. Morgan Stanley & Co. LLC and Harris Williams & Co. served as financial advisors to Safe Fleet in connection with the transaction. Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP is serving as legal counsel to Oak Hill. Willkie Farr & Gallagher LLP is serving as legal counsel to Safe Fleet and Sterling.

About Safe Fleet

Headquartered in Belton, MO, Safe Fleet owns a portfolio of brands that provide safety and productivity solutions to fleet vehicle manufacturers and operators around the world. These brands serve several major markets including: Bus, Rail, RV, Truck & Trailer, Work Truck, Law Enforcement, Emergency, Waste, Industrial, and Military. With over 1,200 employees and 11 manufacturing locations, Safe Fleet targets markets with increasing demand for operator, passenger, and pedestrian safety. For more information about Safe Fleet and its portfolio of brands, please visit www.safefleet.net.

About Oak Hill Capital Partners

Oak Hill is a private equity firm managing funds with more than $10 billion of initial capital commitments since inception from leading global endowments and foundations, public and corporate pension plans, sovereign wealth funds, insurance companies, financial institutions, consultants, and family offices. Over the past 30 years, the professionals at Oak Hill and its predecessors have invested in over 85 significant private equity transactions across broad segments of the U.S. and global economies. Oak Hill applies an industry-focused, theme-based approach to investing in the following sectors: Industrials; Consumer, Retail & Distribution; Media & Communications; and Services. Oak Hill works actively in partnership with management to implement strategic and operational initiatives to create franchise value. For more information, please visit www.oakhillcapital.com.

About The Sterling Group

Founded in 1982, Sterling is a private equity investment firm that targets controlling interests in basic manufacturing, distribution and industrial services companies. Typical enterprise values of these companies range from $100 million to $750 million. Sterling has sponsored the buyout of 52 platform companies and numerous add-on acquisitions for a total transaction value of over $10.0 billion. Currently, Sterling has over $2.2 billion of assets under management. For further information, please visit www.sterling-group.com.

Forward-Looking Statements

Statements included herein may constitute “forward-looking statements”, which relate to future events, the future performance, or financial condition of Safe Fleet following the acquisition of Safe Fleet by Oak Hill. These statements are not guarantees of future performance, condition, or results and involve a number of risks and uncertainties. Actual results and condition may differ materially from those in the forward-looking statements as a result of a number of factors.

Oak Hill Capital Partners Media Contact:                                                                   

Kekst & Company
Jeremy Fielding / Aduke Thelwell
+1 (212) 521-4800 / + (212) 521-4837

Safe Fleet expands into Law Enforcement with COBAN Technologies Acquisition

October 23, 2017 – Safe Fleet is pleased to announce the acquisition of COBAN Technologies, Inc (“COBAN”).

COBAN is a leading supplier of body cameras and in-car video solutions for law enforcement.  Established in 2002, COBAN’s innovative in-car video and digital evidence management software is used by many of the top police departments in the country.

“COBAN is an excellent addition to Safe Fleet’s portfolio.  The combination of COBAN’s position in law enforcement with Safe Fleet’s leading video positions in School and Transit Bus, Fire, Waste, and Commercial markets firmly establishes Safe Fleet as the largest global provider of video solutions to the fleet market,” stated John Knox, CEO of Safe Fleet.  “Safe Fleet/COBAN is now the only video provider able to comprehensively supply common and integrated video solutions to all First Responder departments as well as all municipal fleet markets.”

“The opportunity with Safe Fleet is compelling for our customers and our employees,” said Doug Dickerson, COBAN CEO.  “I’m excited about the acquisition. COBAN’s technology in body worn camera, in-car video, Artificial Intelligence-based (AI) real-time video analytics, video data and evidence management software combined with Safe Fleet’s comprehensive leading product line in Bus and Commercial markets creates best-in-class video product capabilities and breadth.”

Financial terms of the purchase were not disclosed.

About COBAN Technologies

COBAN Technologies is committed to manufacturing and developing digital video solutions of the highest caliber for public safety agencies. COBAN’s unique design of in-car video systems, interview room systems, body worn cameras, evidence management, and back office management software provides law enforcement with a complete digital solution that maximizes return on investment.  Since 2002, COBAN’s commitment to the highest standards of integrity has contributed to the overall satisfaction of our customers. Thousands of COBAN systems have been deployed by hundreds of police departments across the United States, ranging from small departments with a few vehicles, to large, multi-precinct cities such as the City of Los Angeles and City of Chicago. For more information about COBAN please visit www.cobantech.com.

About Safe Fleet

Headquartered in Belton, MO, Safe Fleet owns a portfolio of brands that provide safety solutions to fleet vehicle manufacturers and operators around the world.  These brands serve several major markets including: Bus, Rail and RV, Truck and Trailer, Work Truck, Emergency, Waste, and Industrial and Military.  With over 1,100 employees and 10 manufacturing locations, Safe Fleet targets markets with increasing demand for operator, passenger, and pedestrian safety. For more information about Safe Fleet and our portfolio of brands please visit www.safefleet.net.

 

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Safe Fleet Launches “I Heart Kindness” Coloring and Poster Contests

Safe Fleet launched their fourth annual United Against Bullying (UAB) Coloring Contest on Monday, July 10, 2017. A new poster contest has been included this year for older students. School-age children can submit entries until midnight October 31, 2017 to win prizes and money to help their schools start and sustain programs to spread kindness.

“Statistics continue to report that bullying incidents peak in middle schools,” said Bob Parks, Safe Fleet’s VP of Human Resources and UAB Executive sponsor. “We’ve added the UAB Poster Contest this year to inspire middle and high school students to start conversations about kindness and bullying and to express their feelings through art.”

The UAB Program is the social campaign of Safe Fleet, the leading provider of safety solutions for fleet vehicles. Safe Fleet’s divisions across North America continue to support the Program by sharing the contests within their communities.

This year’s theme for the contests is “I HEART Kindness.” Why? Because kindness increases happiness which increases well-being, empathy, and self-esteem. The contests focus on kindness to empower students and help stop bullying.

All students in the US and Canada are eligible to participate. There are prizes for the winners, runner-ups, and the winners’ schools to help support their kindness or anti-bullying initiatives. Detailed information, rules and regulations, and the Coloring Contest sheet can be found at: www.unitedagainstbullying.net/contests

For more information about this release, please contact:

Teresa Lynne
United Against Bullying Program Coordinator
teresa.lynne@seon.com
1.877.630.7366

unitedagainstbullying.net

Safe Fleet Announces Winners of $50,000 in Anti-Bullying Grants

BELTON, MO (April 24, 2017) – The 2017 United Against Bullying (UAB) Grant Program closed on Friday, March 31st. The annual Grant received a total of 121 applications, up 23% from last year. A total of 35 school districts and community organizations have been selected to receive grant funding this year with awards ranging from $100 to $3500 each.

“The sheer volume as well as the quality of the proposals made the selection of winners a difficult task,” said Bob Parks, Safe Fleet’s VP of Human Resources, and UAB Executive Sponsor. “We hope this funding will help kick-start new programs to end bullying and help those organizations already doing great work to grow their initiatives.”

The UAB Program is the social campaign of Safe Fleet, the leading provider of safety solutions for fleet vehicles. UAB Coordinators and teams from divisions of Safe Fleet in Canada and the US were active in outreach for the Grant Program.

“We are encouraged by the in-depth planning and programming proposed by grant applicants,” says John R. Knox, President and CEO of Safe Fleet. “It is a testament to the commitment of educators and administrators to help youth navigate the potential dangers of bullying, and empower them to succeed at school and in their communities.”

Grant winners’ proposals included strategies to understand what bullying is and how to handle it from the point of view of the bully, the bullied, or the bystander; programs that teach SEL skills (social and emotional learning); school-wide awareness events; art and poetry contests; and transportation departments requesting school bus equipment and training on bullying for bus drivers. The proposals were diverse and well-written with the safety and well-being of students as the clear priority.

2017 United Against Bullying Grant Winners

Banning Unified SD, California

Barren County SD 21, Kentucky

Beekman Charter School, Louisiana

Benjamin Cosor Elementary School, Fallsburg Central SD, New York

Blenheim Bus Lines, Ontario

Cahokia Unit SD 187, Illinois

Carlinville Community Unit School District #1, Illinois

Chadwick R-1 SD, Missouri

Charlotte Mecklenburg County SD, North Carolina

Cottage Grove Middle School, South Washington County Schools, Minnesota

Fordland R-III SD, Missouri

Green Forest SD, Arkansas

Helen Keller Junior High School, Schaumburg SD 54, Illinois

High Mount SD 116, Illinois

Highland Central SD, New York

International Bullying Prevention Association, Michigan

Midway R-1 SD, Missouri

Moreland Arts & Health Sciences Magnet School, Minnesota

PeaceMaker Minnesota, Minnesota

Rachel’s Challenge, Colorado

Reach Child and Youth Development Society, British Columbia

Sit With Us, Inc., California

Smithtown High School East, Smithtown Central SD, New York

St. Louis Public SD, Missouri

Stand Strong USA Inc., DBA Be Strong, Florida

Stevens Point Area SD, Wisconsin

Tackan Elementary School, Smithtown Central SD, New York

Tarkio R-I SD, Missouri

Uvalde Consolidated Independent SD, Texas

Vallo Transportation Ltd., New York

Washington Middle School, SD of Washington, Missouri

Wayne County SD, North Carolina

Worthington City Schools, Ohio

Wynford Elementary School, Wynford Local Schools, Ohio

Zadok Casey Middle School, Illinois

Awards and certificates will be mailed in May. Congratulations and thank you to all of the winners and to everyone who has conversations with young people on kindness and bullying.

About Safe Fleet

Headquartered in Belton, MO, Safe Fleet owns a portfolio of brands that provide safety solutions to fleet vehicle manufacturers and operators around the world.  These brands serve several major markets including: Bus, Rail and RV, Truck and Trailer, Work Truck, Emergency, Waste, and Industrial and Military.  With over 1,100 employees and 10 manufacturing locations, Safe Fleet targets markets with increasing demand for operator, passenger, and pedestrian safety. For more information about Safe Fleet and our portfolio of brands please visit www.safefleet.net.

 

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For more information about this release, please contact:

Teresa Lynne
United Against Bullying Program Coordinator
teresa.lynne@seon.com
1.877.630.7366

unitedagainstbullying.net

Visit Safe Fleet in Booth 4021 at FDIC International 2017 – April 27-29

Safe Fleet Emergency and Industrial brands FRC, Elkhart Brass, and ROM join together to exhibit new products in booth #4021 at FDIC 2017 in Indianapolis this week.  Join us at the largest fire service conference and exhibition in North America April 27th through 29th to see what’s new in fire safety products.

New Products Featured

Elkhart Brass

  • Chief XD
  • RAM XD
  • Boa2000
  • Magnum EXM

ROM

  • Series IV Roll-up Doors

FRC

  • Spectra 950
  • Inview 360, DS2 and TrueSight
  • Work Pro
  • CrestView