Multinational private equity firm Kohlberg Kravis Roberts (KKR) is on the verge of closing a deal for the acquisition of Oklahoma-based engineering unit Crosby Group LLC.
KKR is on the brink of sealing a deal for the purchase Crosby, which specializes in the manufacture of industrial lifting equipment, for a consideration of approximately USD$1 billion, according to anonymous sources close to the matter cited by Reuters.
Crosby , which is based in the Oklahoma city of Tulsa, is a unit of British engineering conglomerate Melrose Industries Plc and manufactures lifting fittings and blocks for use in the oil, gas, mining and construction sectors.
A Melrose representative has since confirmed that the company is in the process of selling Crosby, although refrained from disclosing the name of a specific buyer, revealing only that it was “in discussion with a number of interested parties.”
Melrose’s own business model is akin to that of the private equity firms typified by KKR, acquiring firms and enhancing their operations before offloading them soon afterwards.
The company obtained Crosby in 2008 during its acquisition of engineering conglomerate FKI Plc for USD$1.6 billion.
In July it was reported that Melrose was working with JP Morgan Chase on the sale of Crosby, and the company has since received offers from several other parties for the unit according to sources, including private equity firms Warburg Pincus LLC and CCMP Capital, as well as industrial equipment manufacturers Columbus McKinnon Corp and Actuant.
Should the deal succeed it will not be the first major transaction in the industrial engineering space for either KKR or Melrose this year. Melrose sold Marelli Motors, which makes generators and electric motors, for $287 million in June of this year, to investment firm Carlyle Group LP, while in July KKR closed a deal for the acquisition of Gardner Denver Inc, a maker of pumps and compressors, for $3.9 billion.