LOS ANGELES – Platinum Equity announced on April 12 in a news release that it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Club Car from Ingersoll Rand in a transaction valued at approximately $1.7 billion. The acquisition, subject to standard closing conditions, is expected to be completed by the third quarter of 2021.
Founded in 1958 and headquartered in Augusta, Georgia, Club Car is a global manufacturer of golf cars, utility, personal transportation and other low-speed vehicles, including all-electric models, and related aftermarket parts and services. The business has been owned by Ingersoll Rand since 1995.
“Club Car is an iconic golf brand that for more than 60 years has set the industry standard for quality and innovation,” said Greek-American Platinum Equity Chairman and CEO Tom Gores. “We appreciate Ingersoll Rand’s confidence in our ability to build on that legacy and support Club Car’s continued growth and expansion as a standalone company.”
Ingersoll Rand selected Platinum Equity due to the firm’s deep operational expertise and successful track record with carve-out transactions.
“Club Car is an iconic golf brand that for more than 60 years has set the industry standard for quality and innovation,” said Platinum Equity Chairman and CEO Tom Gores. “We appreciate Ingersoll Rand’s confidence in our ability to build on that legacy and support Club Car’s continued growth and expansion as a standalone company.”
“We are grateful for the dedication and commitment Club Car employees have had over the years to make their business a success,” said Ingersoll Rand CEO Vicente Reynal. “We believe Platinum is well equipped to ensure a seamless transition and is the right partner to help Club Car achieve its next phase of growth and evolution.”
In addition to its leadership in fleet golf cars, today Club Car manufactures a growing line of products for consumers and for commercial customers, including hotels and resorts, college campuses, airlines, theme parks and rental companies.
“Demand for electric vehicles across many product platforms and geographies is at an all-time high,” said Club Car President Mark Wagner, who will continue to lead the company under Platinum Equity’s ownership. “Golf remains a very stable, healthy business while our consumer and commercial markets are rapidly growing around the world. As our product line and geographic reach have expanded, so has the complexity of our business. Platinum’s experience and global resources will be vital to helping us continue that growth and to achieving our long-term ambitions.”
“Club Car has outstanding leadership, an entrepreneurial culture and a very close connection to its customer base, which has helped the company stay in front of new trends and create new market opportunities,” said Platinum Equity Partner Jacob Kotzubei. “We look forward to working with Mark and the management team to continue investing in innovation, product development and international expansion.”
Technology has played an important role in the company’s strategy across core and emerging segments. Built-in vehicle entertainment and interactive tools like Club Car Connect, the Shark Experience and Visage Fleet Management offer video, streaming music and news, as well as revenue-generating course and fleet management tools for course operators. Additional technology-driven offerings include the Tempo Walk autonomous caddie that caters to golfers who prefer walking rather than renting a car.
Platinum Equity expects those types of innovations to continue and will look both inside and outside the company for additional opportunities to grow revenue and enhance or expand products and services.
“Club Car is an attractive platform for strategic partnerships and prospective add-on acquisitions that can help further extend its reach into new geographies or adjacent markets,” said Platinum Equity Managing Director Matt Louie. “We have a lot of experience helping companies grow and will put our M&A resources to work on the company’s behalf.”
Platinum Equity has 25 years’ experience acquiring and operating global businesses that have been part of large corporate entities. In recent years the firm has acquired businesses from Ball Corporation, Emerson Electric, Johnson & Johnson, Newell Brands, Office Depot, Pitney Bowes, and Wyndham Worldwide Corporation, among others.