Minnetonka, MN – Shock Doctor Inc. (“Shock Doctor Sports” or “the Company”), a global leader in mouthguard technology and an innovator of sports protective and performance gear, announced today that it has been acquired by Bregal Partners, a leading middle market New York-based private equity firm. Bregal’s investment is in partnership with Shock Doctor Sports’ management; financial terms were not disclosed.
Trusted by athletes around the world who demand performance and protection, Shock Doctor Sports owns two brands: Shock Doctor, the number one mouthguard company in the world for over 15 years and creators of sports protection gear for hockey, football, baseball, basketball, soccer, martial arts, boxing, and lacrosse, amongst other sports; and Cutters Gloves, an industry leading line of performance gloves and accessories for football and baseball made with exclusive C-TACK™ Performance Grip Material.
The new partnership with Bregal creates a platform from which Shock Doctor Sports can fuel growth and increase its role as a significant player in the global performance and protective sports equipment market. With a loyal fan base and meticulous focus on quality and innovation, Shock Doctor Sports has been one of the fastest growing sporting goods companies in the world. The Company’s athlete-centric approach and commitment to developing game-changing technology changed the way athletes view protective gear.
“Shock Doctor’s groundbreaking, well-designed products have made protection not something athletes have to wear but want to wear,” commented Shock Doctor Sports Chief Executive Officer, Tony Armand. “We have had an amazing investment partnership over the last six years with Norwest Equity Partners, and now as we look forward to our next phase of growth, our entire Shock Doctor team is thrilled to partner with Bregal Partners. Bregal brings a unique blend of consumer and healthcare investment experience that will undoubtedly help us achieve our growth objectives and continued success.”
Bregal Co-Founder and Managing Partner, Robert Bergmann, noted, “We see a great opportunity for Shock Doctor to continue to revolutionize the $9 billion global market for performance and protective equipment with new, innovative, and distinctive products. Beyond entering new categories, the Company should also benefit from overall market growth and an ability to acquire other industry participants.” This acquisition also helps to expand Bregal’s consumer healthcare portfolio.
Bergmann added that the transaction gives Bregal a chance to work together for a second time with Armand. “We are also delighted to have the opportunity to again partner with Tony as we’ve had a 15-year relationship. The talent and track record of both Tony and the Shock Doctor management team is a key reason we are so excited about the transaction.”
Tim Kuehl, a partner at Norwest Equity Partners, stated, “We had a very successful investment partnership with Tony and the entire Shock Doctor team. Together we worked hard to increase our position as a market leader in the performance and protective equipment category, created and acquired new products lines which helped to nearly triple overall revenue. Shock Doctor Sports is well-positioned for continued growth and success under Tony Armand’s leadership and with their new investment partner.”
William Blair & Company and Lindquist & Vennum represented Norwest Equity Partners, and Dechert LLP represented Bregal Partners in this transaction.
About Shock Doctor Sports
Shock Doctor Sports is a leading manufacturer of protective and performance sports equipment. With a relentless focus on innovation and technology, its products are trusted by athletes, from youth to amateur to professional, across a growing number of sports. Shock Doctor Sports has the world’s leading mouthguard product line and also provides a full continuum of superior athletic products, including core protective, compression, performance sports therapy, sports gloves (under the Cutters® brand), and insoles. Its products are sold through major sporting goods retailers, independent dealers, online retailers, and health care professionals throughout the United States and around the globe. For more information on Shock Doctor Sports, please visit www.shockdoctor.com and www.cuttersgloves.com.
About Bregal Partners
Bregal Partners is a private investment firm that invests alongside management teams to build industry leading companies in the middle market. Areas of focus include energy services, consumer, food and retail, and healthcare. With $500 million of committed capital funded by a sixth-generation family foundation with roots back to 1841, Bregal Partners brings experience, stability, and a long-term outlook to all of its investment activities. Bregal Partners is part of Bregal Investments, a global family of private equity and fund investment vehicles that has invested more than $9 billion since 2002. For more information on Bregal Partners, please visit www.bregalpartners.com.
About Norwest Equity Partners
As a leading equity investment firm since 1961, Norwest Equity Partners (NEP) partners with middle market business owners and their management teams to make growing, profitable companies into industry leaders. With nearly $5 billion in capital under management, NEP seeks $30mm-$150mm investment opportunities with a variety of industry sectors, including agriculture, applied technology, business services, consumer products and services, diversified industrials and healthcare. NEP is headquartered in Minneapolis, Minnesota. For more information on NEP, please visit www.nep.com.