Pritzker Private Capital (PPC), a leader in family direct investing, has signed definitive agreements to acquire Highline Aftermarket Holdings LLC, a national distributor of automotive aftermarket products that is majority owned by The Sterling Group, and Warren Distribution Inc., a manufacturer of private label lubricants and automotive chemicals that is majority owned by Chairman and CEO Bob Schlott. PPC and co-investors are investing alongside members of the Highline and Warren management teams. The companies will be combined upon closing of the transaction, which is expected by December 2020.
The combined company will be a leader in the manufacture and distribution of automotive aftermarket consumable products. The company will have 27 facilities across North America and more than 22,000 SKUs, including windshield washer fluid, engine lubricants and a wide variety of consumable automotive aftermarket products. Darcy Curran, Highline’s current CEO, will lead the combined business and Bob Schlott, Warren’s chairman and CEO, whose family founded Warren in 1922, will remain as a board adviser.
“We are excited to partner with Bob Schlott and the team at Warren Distribution as we continue to grow our great businesses,” said Darcy Curran, Highline CEO. “Highline and Warren have a shared passion for delivering world-class customer service, and together we’ll strive to be the best company to work for, buy from and sell to in the automotive aftermarket.”
“For nearly 100 years, Warren has been a leader in private label lubricants, and I believe the combination with Highline represents an exciting new chapter in Warren’s long history,” said Schlott. “Highline, Warren and PPC all share a philosophy of building great companies for the long-term with a strong commitment to customers, employees and our communities.”
Michael Nelson, head of Investing at PPC, added, “We are thrilled to partner with Darcy, Bob and the Highline and Warren teams in building this exciting combination for long-term success. As a leading supplier for the automotive aftermarket, the combined company will have tremendous opportunities for growth, both through organic initiatives and accretive acquisitions.”