Ouellet Group Acquires Innovair Corporation, a Leading Manufacturer and Distributor of HVAC Equipment
FourBridges initiated, negotiated and structured the deal on behalf of Innovair
CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (July 16, 2021) — FourBridges Capital today announced that Ouellet Group, a designer, manufacturer and distributor of electric heating and cooling products, has acquired Innovair Corporation. FourBridges Capital, an investment banking firm that helps business owners sell their companies, refinance debt or access growth capital, acted as exclusive financial advisor to Innovair.
Ouellet Group is headquartered in L’Islet, Quebec, and was founded in 1967 as a backyard family business. Over the past 50 years, Ouellet has become known particularly for its high-performance electric heating products, which are distributed and sold across North America and Europe.
Based in Miami, Florida, Innovair was founded by Julio Gomez, president, and his wife Maria, in 1997. The company manufactures and distributes branded air conditioning equipment and parts for residential, light commercial, and commercial applications in the U.S. and Latin America.
“Maria and I spent our careers building this company. We are proud of the success we’ve achieved, but we reached a point where we were ready to transition away from our day-to-day responsibilities and achieve meaningful liquidity,” said Julio Gomez.
“FourBridges helped us navigate every aspect of the sell-side process and structure a deal that not only meets our financial goals, but preserves the culture that is vitally important to us, our employees and our customers. This transaction also provided our son Alex the opportunity to move into a larger leadership role and continue to guide the company’s growth.”
Ouellet was looking to grow in the U.S. and determined that buy-versus-build was the best strategy. Ouellet is historically focused on heating and relatively new to the AC market; now, with vertically integrated manufacturing and an overlap in outsourced manufacturing, the combined entity will enjoy greater efficiencies and growth opportunities.
“FourBridges helped us navigate every aspect of the sell-side process and structure a deal that not only meets our financial goals, but preserves the culture that is vitally important to us, our employees and our customers.”
Innovair will remain a wholly owned subsidiary and operate as it always has, with management in Florida remaining intact. Innovair owners will stay involved with the business as they have retained the real estate via a long-term lease with Ouellet. The combined entity will look to grow the HVAC business aggressively in the U.S. via distributor relationships and direct to consumer.
“The FourBridges team worked with Innovair to understand their objectives and corporate philosophy before going to market, so we knew exactly what we were looking for in a buyer,” said Ralph Montgomery, managing director at FourBridges Capital. “This transaction is a great fit and perfect win-win for both companies, allowing the Innovair owners to achieve their desired liquidity, while giving Ouellet the opportunity to expand into promising new markets.”
The FourBridges team of Ralph Montgomery and Andrew Allred acted as exclusive M&A advisors to Innovair. John Haley, Matthew Thompson and Trenton Parks of Nelson Mullins provided legal counsel to Innovair.