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Sawaya Segalas News
May 7, 2013
Trivest Partners Announces the Recapitalization of American Covers, Inc.

MIAMI, FL — Trivest Partners ("Trivest") today announced the successful recapitalization of American Covers, Inc. (d/b/a "HandStands" or the "Company"), a leading designer and supplier of automotive air freshener products sold through mass and aftermarket automotive channels. Chris Anderson, HandStands' CEO, along with the Company's current management team, will continue to lead daily operations. The existing HandStands shareholders retained a significant equity interest in the Company. The HandStands transaction represents the 1st platform company investment in Trivest Fund V, a $415 million fund dedicated to investing in founder/family owned businesses.
Founded in 1983, HandStands designs and markets automotive air freshener products through the Refresh Your Car!®, DRIVEN® and Bahama & Co.® brand names, among others. HandStands sells products across a diverse group of several hundred domestic and international customers. The Company's primarily channels of distribution include the mass market, automotive aftermarket, value and food/drug channels, as well as key distributor partners.
As evidenced by HandStands' robust patent portfolio, the Company is highly focused on driving incremental growth in its category through new product design and innovation. Delivering high quality and differentiated products, at an attractive consumer value proposition, has allowed HandStands to achieve #1 US Domestic market share according to the NPD Group. HandStands' new designs have been especially influential in the vent, novelty and can/tin segments of the category, each of which has outpaced industry growth.
HandStands' CEO Chris Anderson stated, "With a 30-year history of innovation and growth, HandStands' shareholders and management team are passionate about continuing to grow the business, while remaining true to the principles that have guided the company since its beginning. From our first meeting with Trivest, it was clear that they not only have the experience and capital to support HandStands in our next chapter of growth and success; but, and perhaps more importantly, the Trivest and HandStands teams share overlapping cultures based on transparency, sustainability and trust."
Troy Templeton, Trivest's Managing Partner, stated, "We are delighted the HandStands team identified Trivest as the best partner to help build on the Company's impressive track record. Chris Anderson and his team are among the most talented and capable managers we have worked with in the lower middle market. We continue to be impressed not only with management's ability to drive industry growth through innovation, but also their focus on the long-term success of their retail partners."
Madison Capital served as the Administrative Lending Agent in the transaction and Ally Commercial Finance served as the Syndication Agent. Sawaya Segalas & Co., LLC, a leading consumer-focused investment banking firm, acted as exclusive financial advisor to HandStands in connection with the transaction. The HandStands management team and shareholders chose to pursue a pre-emptive transaction with Trivest rather than running a broad auction process.
About Trivest Partners:
Trivest Partners is a private investment firm that focuses on partnering with founder/family owned businesses in the United States and Canada. Since its founding in 1981, Trivest has completed more than 190 transactions, totaling almost $5.0 billion in value. For additional information, please visit www.trivest.com.

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