Affordable Interior Systems Sold for $100 Million to Boston-Based Buyout Firm
Brook Venture Partners, which manages a series of expansion stage venture capital funds and co-investment funds, announces today that one of its portfolio companies, Affordable Interior Systems, Inc., has been sold to Audax Group, a large Boston-based buyout fund. In 1999, Brook led an investment in Affordable Interior Systems, which enabled Affordable’s management to buy the Company from U. S. Office Products, Inc. The Affordable Interiors investment was made from Brook Fund I, a 1999 vintage fund.
“Our relationship with Affordable began in 1996, and the sale of the Company ends a chapter in which Brook has played an important role in the Company’s rapid growth,” says Andrew Clapp, partner with Brook Venture Partners.
“We are grateful for Brook’s support over the years, beginning when we needed a small amount of equity and throughout the years as an advisor to senior management,” says Arthur Maxwell, chairman and co-founder of the Company. “We were able to deliver an exceptional return to our shareholders and fully expect to do the same for Audax.”
Founded in 1989 as a remanufacturer of office partitions, Affordable shifted to manufacturing new office partitioning systems and office furniture in the late 1990’s. The Company won the coveted Shingo award in 2003, and was the only small business among the 14 award recipients that year. According to Business Week, the Shingo Prize, which recognizes companies that have successfully implemented lean manufacturing principles, is considered the “Nobel Prize of manufacturing.”
According Ned Williams, a partner with Brook. “Most funds have left the $2-5 million investment segment, whereas Brook has demonstrated this niche to be a vibrant market for finding good companies at reasonable valuations. The sale of Affordable Systems will materially boost the performance of Brook I which is already a top quartile performer. “Brook invests in expansion stage companies primarily in the Information Technology and Medical Technology sectors. Investments made by Brook Fund II, the $100 million fund from which the firm is currently investing to date include Repromedix Corp., Wandrian, Inc., HistoRx, Inc., and Anodyne Health Partners, Inc. Investors in Brook II, , include the State of Pennsylvania, State of Vermont, Finance Authority of Maine, Bank North, Merrill Lynch, Brooke Private Equity, Green Stamp America, and other institutional investors.
About Affordable Interior Systems, Inc.
Affordable Interior Systems, Inc. is a manufacturer of office furniture systems. With more than 200 employees, AIS operates out of two state-of-the-art manufacturing facilities to bring its products to market at a lower cost to customers. Affordable’s products are distributed by more than 650 dealers in 44 states and the Caribbean. The Company is headquartered in Hudson, MA. For more information call 800-434-7400 or visit www.ais-inc.com.
About Brook Venture Partners
Brook Venture Partners provides expansion stage capital through Brook Venture Fund II to information technology and medical technology companies located in the northeastern United States. The firm focuses on initial investments of $2–5 million. Brook is headquartered outside Boston in Wakefield, MA. For information call 781-295-4000 or visit www.brookventure.com.
Hennessey Public Relations