APi being acquired by J2 Acquisition Ltd.

APi Group, Inc. – owner of the Jamar Co., Northland Constructors and United Piping in Duluth – has agreed to be purchased by J2 Acquisition Limited, an international provider of commercial life safety products and industrial specialty services. The transaction is valued at $2.9 billion.

J2 expects to list its shares on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol APG.

Owned by Board Chairman Lee R. Anderson Sr., who developed 35 commercial properties in Duluth with the late Rob Link, APi provides commercial life safety products and industrial specialty services. The company is considered a top-five specialty contractor in the United States, APi said in a Tuesday announcement. It operates more than 40 businesses in more than 200 locations. APi said it expects to deliver approximately $4 billion in revenue and approximately 10 percent adjusted EBITDA margins for the full year 2019. The privately-held firm employs more than 15,000 persons.

"We believe APi is an excellent foundation for J2's initial investment and is solidly in line with our disciplined investment criteria,” Sir Martin E. Franklin, co-founder of J2, said in the announcement. “We look forward to working with Russ Becker, the president and CEO of APi, whose leadership has positioned the company for the strong growth opportunities ahead." 

James E. Lillie, co-founder of J2, added, "We were immediately impressed by APi's management team, its strong culture, and its commitment to leadership development, combined with consistent delivery of margins and cash flow at the high end of its peer group over the years. We expect APi to deliver long-term value creation.”

APi's existing management team will remain in place, including President and CEO Russell A. Becker and Thomas Lydon, who upon closing will become the combined company's CEO and CFO respectively. Martin E. Franklin and James E. Lillie will become co-chairmen of the company, Ian G.H. Ashken and Russell Becker will join the board along with a number of other board additions to be announced at closing of the transaction. J2 intends to change its name to APi Group Corporation upon closing. 

"The J2 team's decades of leadership experience operating large diverse businesses, broad industrial knowledge, and disciplined acquisition strategy – that they have employed successfully at previous companies and ventures – will be instrumental in further growing APi's inherent value and innovative, customer-centric approach over the long term,” Russell A. Becker, president and CEO of APi, said in a prepared statement. “The J2 team's approach has historically produced impressive results and opportunities for shareholders, customers, suppliers, the communities in which they operate, and importantly, for employees, and is highly complementary to APi's existing culture and strategy. We look forward to benefitting from J2's successful operating experience and investment knowledge. Additionally, I want to thank Lee Anderson for his 55-plus  years of service at APi. Our tremendous growth and unique culture would not have been possible without his leadership, commitment, sacrifice and complete dedication to APi."