New York – US private equity firm Liberty has acquired Dunlop Aircraft Tyres, based in Birmingham, UK for around $135 million, Liberty Hall announced 15 June.
Liberty Hall invests in businesses serving the global aerospace and defence industry and complementary industrial end markets and acquired the business from AAC Capital Partners, which has owned Dunlop Aircraft Tyres since 2007.
Dunlop Aircraft Tyres supplies aircraft tires and tubes, using dedicated manufacturing and retreading techniques. With a 107-year history it is today the only dedicated aircraft tire manufacturer and retreader. Customers include major international airlines, aircraft constructors, wheel and brake manufacturers and maintenance facilities.
The company is the world’s “only pure-play specialist aircraft tire manufacturer” and Liberty Hall’s first portfolio company providing aftermarket products and services to the global aerospace and defence industry.
“Our intention is to steward the legacy, reputation and brand name that Dunlop Aircraft Tyres has built over its 100-plus year lifetime to grow the company into an independent, global, diversified supplier of aircraft tire products of the highest value,” said Rowan Taylor, Liberty Hall’s founding partner.
Taylor added that the UK-based business was “ideally placed to continue to outperform the market. The company has also executed a successful business strategy based upon geographic expansion, product and technology range enhancement and modernisation.
“We intend to provide management with the financial, intellectual and human capital necessary to continue to meet the needs of Dunlop’s customers.”
Dunlop Aircraft Tyres operates three facilities located in Birmingham, Mocksville, North Carolina, and Jinjiang, China and has around 570 employees. Over 90% of Dunlop Aircraft Tyres’s revenues are generated in the aftermarket.
The tire maker’s proprietary products are used on more than 150 commercial, regional and military aircraft platforms and serve over 300 global customers, including airline operators and manufacturers, said Liberty Hall.
Dunlop Aircraft Tyres’s existing management team, led by Gordon Roper, CEO and managing director, are to maintain their roles following the acquisition.
With its experience in the global aerospace industry, Liberty Hall “is ideally positioned to help us accelerate the outstanding growth record that we have demonstrated in recent years,” said Roper.
In 2013, Liberty Hall formed Tulsa, Oklahoma-based Accurus Aerospace Corp., a diversified tier 2 aerostructures supplier. Last year, it acquired Renton, Washington-based AIM Aerospace, an independent supplier of composite ducting, structural and interiors parts for the commercial aerospace industry.
In March 2016, Liberty Hall acquired Birmingham-based Bromford Industries, a leading supplier of complex, close tolerance engine components, fabrications and assemblies and landing gear components for the global aerospace and power generation industries.