MiddleGround Capital (“MiddleGround”), a private equity firm that makes control investments in business-to-business (“B2B”) industrial and specialty distribution companies in the North American lower middle market today announced the closure of its third transaction of its inaugural private equity fund– the acquisition of Steel-Craft Corp. of Hartford, Hartford Finishing, LLC and Capitol Stampings Corp. (collectively, the “Companies”). The Companies provide a suite of complementary outsourced manufacturing services and are headquartered in Hartford, Wisconsin.
The Companies go to market under three distinct brands, Steel Craft, Hartford Finishing and Capitol Stampings. “MiddleGround has emerged as the perfect partner to help the Wendorff family of companies transition from three independent operations to one aligned company that provides vertically integrated solutions to our customers,” said Tom Verbos, CEO of the Companies.
“We are excited to partner with Tom and the whole team. They have done a fantastic job growing the business and serving their customers over the years,” said Lauren Mulholland, co-founder of MiddleGround.
“We are honored to continue the legacy that Gary and Gene Wendorff began over 40 years ago when they founded Steel Craft,” said John Stewart, co-founder of MiddleGround. “Historically, entrepreneurs like Gary and Gene have helped to create and support the backbone of US manufacturing. We understand the significance of the Wendorff family of companies and look forward to building on their success for the benefit of every customer, supplier and employee of Steel Craft, Hartford Finishing and Capitol Stamping.”
Mr. Stewart, Ms. Mulholland and Mr. Duncan have been working together in private equity for the past eight years. In addition to their work in the private equity industry, Mr. Stewart and Mr. Duncan have over 30 years of combined experience working in operational roles at Toyota Motor Company, including leadership positions in engineering, maintenance, production and manufacturing.
About MiddleGround Capital
MiddleGround Capital is a newly formed private equity firm that makes control equity investments in lower middle market North American companies in the B2B industrial and specialty distribution sectors. The firm works with its portfolio companies to create value through a hands-on operational approach and partners with its management teams to support long-term growth strategies. Founded by John Stewart, Lauren Mulholland and Scot Duncan, the firm is based in Lexington, Kentucky with an office in New York City.