The Dwyer Group, the franchisor of The Grounds Guys landscape maintenance franchuse in the united strates and Canada, has acquired Countrywide Grounds Maintenance in the U.K.  Countrywide has approximately 50 franch8sed locations.  Here is the text of the announcement:

Dwyer Group Acquires CountrywideThe Dwyer Group, Inc., one of the world’s largest parent companies of trade service brands, has completed the add-on acquisition of Countrywide Grounds Maintenance, a long-standing commercial groundskeeping service based in the United Kingdom. The deal marks the tenth acquisition for Dwyer Group, which recently reached $1.5 billion in system-wide sales. Dwyer Group will now have 19 brands with more than 2,850 franchisees and 700 employees across their service brands throughout North America, U.K. and Germany.

“Countrywide brings three decades of experience in grounds maintenance to our organization and is a great fit for Dwyer Group’s growing family of service brands in the United Kingdom,” said Mike Bidwell, president and CEO of Dwyer Group. “We look forward to growing that presence and providing the best professional solution for landscape maintenance and management.”

Countrywide Grounds Maintenance offers commercial grass cutting, landscape maintenance, sports grounds maintenance and winter gritting services. Established by Founder Martin Stott in 1985, he and his family have grown Countrywide Grounds Maintenance from a family-owned and operated business into a system with more than 50 franchisees.

“On behalf of the Stott family and Countrywide team, we are so proud of the amazing franchisees who have helped to build the Countrywide network,” said Co-Founder Simon Stott. “I am confident that under the guidance and leadership of Dwyer Group, the future of this organization and our family’s legacy will continue to be nothing short of extraordinary.”

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Prescription Landscape, based in Minneapolis-St. Paul has acquired Arteka Outdoor Services, a landscape services provider focusing on the HOA market.  Here is the press release announcing the acquisition:

Prescription Landscape Acquires Arteka OutdoorPrescription Landscape, Inc., (“Prescription”) Minneapolis-St. Paul’s leading commercial landscape services and snow removal provider, announced the acquisition of Arteka Outdoor Services from Arteka Companies, LLC. (“Arteka”) Arteka Outdoor Services is a specialty landscape service provider for select home owner association (HOA) and premium sites in Minneapolis-St. Paul, and the greater metropolitan markets.

Terms of the deal, which closed June 1, 2017, will not be disclosed.

“This addition to the Prescription portfolio will help us strengthen our presence in the HOA market,” said Prescription’s Chief Executive Officer, Ryan Foudray. “Like Prescription, Arteka has a long tradition of quality and integrity and they enjoy admirable customer & employee loyalty as a result. We are privileged to welcome Arteka team members and clients to our company.”

“We have worked very hard to build our reputation and we are gratified that Prescription recognizes our passion for our clients, employees and the industry,” said Arteka President & CEO, Stewart Hanson. “Our companies share many of the same values, and in a true show of commitment to client services, the Arteka Outdoor Services team members will continue on with Prescription.”

Mr. Hanson will refocus Arteka Companies on the rapidly expanding Arteka Landscape Construction Service business in existing and new markets.

For more information, contact Ryan Foudray at ryanfoudray(at)rxlandscape(dot)com or 612-369-1660.

About Prescription Landscape: Prescription Landscape is a Minnesota-owned and operated, full-service grounds maintenance and landscape management company committed to the highest standards in environmental stewardship, employee credentialing and landscape professionalism. Our team takes pride in remembering the details and delivering superior customer service.

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Reading, Pa. (April 10, 2017)Rentokil Steritech announces today its acquisition of the assets of Heron Pest Control, Inc., headquartered in Apopka, Florida. The acquisition of this Orlando metro-based company marks a continued expansion for Rentokil Steritech in the state of Florida and throughout the southeast United States. The deal closed on April 3 and terms were not disclosed.

As a result of the acquisition, Heron brings 8 branch offices throughout central Florida and a team of over 200 employees, including 90 pest control and lawn care technicians. The fast-growing company offers residential pest control, including termite, mosquito, bed bug, and wildlife control services. Additionally, Heron also offers lawn care treatment and irrigation services. All existing employees will stay on and the current leadership will remain intact to run the operations moving forward to guarantee a seamless transition for all Heron customers.

“This new partnership is very exciting, as we expand our reach and services in the central Florida market to best serve our residential customers,” said John Myers, president and CEO, Rentokil Steritech. “The company values of Heron and Rentokil Steritech are aligned, as both teams are deeply committed to delivering exceptional customer service. We are thrilled to have acquired such a strong management team and are excited to also expand commercial pest services to Heron in this market.”

“We admire the growth-oriented nature of Rentokil Steritech and we couldn’t be more enthusiastic to embark on this partnership together,” said Greg Clendenin, CEO of Heron Pest Control, Inc.

For additional information on Rentokil Steritech and its family of regional pest control brands in the United States, please visit For information on Heron Pest Control, Inc., please visit

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Senske ServicesSenske Lawn & Tree Care of Kennewick, Washington, has completed another lawn care acquisition, this time in their home state of Washington. Senske has been executing an acquisition strategy over a number of years.  Here is the press release announcing the acquisition:

Senske Lawn & Tree Care announces the acquisition of assets of Turf’s Up!, Inc., a lawn and tree care provider based in Lake Stevens, Washington. Turf’s Up!, manager and owner Dave Zimmerman established the company in 1987. Since that time, Turf’s Up! customers have received trusted lawn and tree care from Mr. Zimmerman and his wife Lindsey along with their team. Effective immediately, those customers will be serviced by the Washington Tree and Lawn Care division of Senske Lawn & Tree Care, located in Shoreline, Washington.

According to Zimmerman, “Senske’s reputation precedes itself as an outstanding company that prides itself in professionalism and the work that it does. I believe that the acquisition of Turf’s Up! by Senske will prove to be mutually beneficial for all parties involved.” He went on to add, “both companies share a ‘customer first’ culture that make Senske and their Washington Tree and Lawn Care division a good fit for this acquisition.”

When asked about the deal, Senske President Chris Senske noted, “We anticipate a seamless transition for Turf’s Up! customers and they should expect to receive service as usual. We continuously look to merge with high-quality companies who share our goals, principles and culture and I believe we found the perfect fit with Turf’s Up!.”

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Rotolo Consultants Inc., based in Slidell, Louisiana,  has acquired Greenscape Grounds Management company that serves the Lafayette and Lake Charles markets.

Details of the acquisition were not released. According to the press releasing announcing  the acquisition, “It enhances RCI’s position as one of the largest commercial landscape businesses in the Southeast.

“The acquisition of Greenscape is in line with our goal of expanding RCI via not only organic growth but also through the selective acquisition of quality companies,” RCI President and CEO Keith Rotolo said in a statement.

Greenscape Grounds Management owner Brad Breaux, and his brother, Ross Breaux, will continue in management roles with RCI, the news release said. Brad Breaux said the acquisition helps his firm expand its services to new and existing clients in their firm’s markets.

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CI Capital Partners, a New York-based private equity firm has acquired a majority interest in SavATree, a fast growing company engaged in tree care and tree and shrub care services.  SavATree has completed eleven acquisitions making it among the most active acquirors in the industry.  In recent months, SavATree acquired Mountain High Tree, Lawn and Landscape in Colorado and Thrive, Plant Health Care Solutions in Virginia.

We have been closely watching the interest of the private equity in the lawn and tree care segment, especially since industry-leader TruGreen acquired number two Scotts LawnCare Service.  There has been a significant gap between TruGreen/Scotts and the next largest lawncare provider, seemingly creating a market opportunity.

Here is the text of the press release announcing the acquisition:

BEDFORD HILLS, N.Y. and NEW YORKJune 6, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — CI Capital Partners (“CI Capital”), a New York-based private equity firm, and SavATree, a leading provider of quality tree, shrub and lawn care services, announced today that an affiliate of CI Capital has acquired a majority interest in SavATree.  The management team of SavATree has a significant equity ownership in the company.  Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

SavATree is committed to an environmentally sensible approach to tree, shrub and lawn care services and has been caring for residential, commercial, community and government properties for over 30 years. The company services customers in 12 states through 25 locations.

Since 1985, under the leadership of Daniel van Starrenburg, who will remain CEO, SavATree has expanded through both organic growth and eleven strategic add-on acquisitions. The partnership with CI Capital will enable the company to continue its growth and bring SavATree’s industry leading services to new regions of the United States.

Mr. van Starrenburg said, “We are excited to form this partnership with CI Capital, whose experience executing buy and build strategies will help us accelerate the pace of our acquisitions. We look forward to working with CI Capital to further expand SavATree’s business while providing the same high level of service our customers expect.”

“We have known Daniel for some time and are very impressed with the business he and his team have built,” said Joost Thesseling, Managing Director at CI Capital. “We are grateful for this opportunity and are committed to providing the SavATree team with the resources and support they need to achieve their growth objectives.”

About SavATree
SavATree, the green choice for tree, shrub and lawn care, provides environmentally sensible services to residential, commercial, community and government properties in the Northeast, Mid-Atlantic, Midwest and Western region. Property stewardship programs feature organic and hybrid plant health care, general tree care and lawn care – all highly customized to meet the needs of each landscape.  Services include tree and shrub pruning, insect and disease management, deer deterrence, lawn care as well as tree and shrub nutrient/fertilization programs.  Learn more at

About CI Capital Partners
CI Capital Partners LLC, a leading North American private equity investment firm with approximately $2.4 billion in assets under management, has been investing in middle-market companies since 1993.  Since inception, CI Capital and its portfolio companies have made over 220 acquisitions representing approximately $8 billion in enterprise value.

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We get to see a lot of company founders who are contemplating an exit. Some of our clients get lucky early in life, but in the vast majority of examples where a founder is getting a seven- or eight-figure offer, it is not their first rodeo. In fact, most owners have had multiple failures and modest successes before their first big exit.

One of the most compelling reasons to consider selling your business is to give yourself a clean canvass for designing your next business. You can take all of the lessons you’ve learned building your current company and apply them to a new idea.

What would you do with a clean slate?

Michelle Romanow partnered with two friends from her engineering class and together they founded Evandale Caviar in their early 20s. The trio’s idea was to sell caviar to high-end restaurants around the world.

The partners built a fishery and had just started to get the business off the ground by the summer of 2008 when the luxury restaurant industry started to wobble. By fall of that year, high-end restaurants around the world were suffering, and by the end of 2008, the industry was on its knees.

Evandale Caviar failed.

The partners licked their wounds and came together to start a new business, a deal-of-the-day website called Buytopia. They had learned from their Evandale experience and were building a good little business—call it a single, to use a baseball analogy—when the partners started to tinker with a third idea.

From nothing to $25 million in 12 months

Romanow saw big companies wasting millions of dollars printing paper coupons and reasoned that there must be a more efficient way to distribute them. They dreamt up a mobile app that would notify the shoppers in a grocery store of special offers and let them snap a picture of their grocery receipt and receive money back on the products being promoted. The SnapSaves business model was to charge the company advertising its offers through the app.

Romanow and her partners poured more than $100,000 a month of Buytopia cash into SnapSaves, and within six months they had a product they could take to market. They launched SnapSaves in August 2013 and the company was a quick hit with consumers and advertisers. Within a year, the founders were entertaining venture capital investment offers with an implied valuation of around $25 million for their young company.

That’s when Groupon called and said they wanted to buy SnapSaves outright. The partners haggled with Groupon and got them to double their offer in the process. Less than a year after launching SnapSaves, they agreed to be acquired by Groupon.

Third time’s a charm

A casual observer of the SnapSaves story would likely chalk it up to luck: a couple of friends leave school, start a business and become an overnight success. That’s a convenient story, but it’s not true.

SnapSaves would never have happened without the lessons the partners learned from Evandale. And therein lies the secret to many successful entrepreneurs: they got their first few businesses out of the way early in their working lives to make the time, room and capital for a true success.

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SiteOne LogoAfter announcing five acquisitions in the first quarter, SiteOne™ Landscape Supply, Inc., the largest and only national wholesale distributor of landscape supplies in the United States, announced on May 25 that it had acquired Evergreen Partners. Started in 2007, Evergreen has two locations in Raleigh, NC and Myrtle Beach, SC and is a leader in the distribution of nursery material. The acquisition of Evergreen Partners allows SiteOne to expand its existing Raleigh, NC footprint and provides SiteOne with its first Nursery wholesale location in the Myrtle Beach, SC area.
“Evergreen is a terrific fit with SiteOne as they expand our existing nursery presence in Raleigh, NC and is the clear market leader for nursery products in the Myrtle Beach, SC market. The addition of Evergreen provides two dedicated nursery product locations to complement our network of 45 locations in North and South Carolina offering the full range of nursery, hardscape, agronomic, irrigation and outdoor lighting products,” said Doug Black, CEO of SiteOne Landscape Supply.
“Evergreen’s talented team shares SiteOne’s passion and desire to provide excellent quality, service and value to their customers. The combination of Evergreen and SiteOne is yet another step forward in our mission to become the best full-line distributor in the Green Industry. We welcome all of the Evergreen associates to our family,” said Black.
SiteOne announced the following acquisitions earlier in 2017:
Angelo’s Supplies – (two locations in the Detroit area)
American Builders Supply (twelve locations – Los Angeles and Las Vegas)
Stone Forest Materials (one location in Georgia)
East Haven Landscape (three locations in New York and Connecticut)
Aspen Valley Landscape Supply (three loiations in the Chicago area)

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ClearLight Partners has invested in Moore Landscapes, a landscape installation, maintenance, enhancement and snow services in  the Chicago area.

NEWPORT BEACH, Calif.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Private investment firm ClearLight Partners announced today that it has made a majority investment in Moore Landscapes, a premier Chicagoland provider of landscape installation, maintenance, enhancement, and snow services, as well as interior plant maintenance. Eric and Victor Moore, long-time owners of the Company, remain equity holders and Board members. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed. In connection with the investment, Joel Korte, formerly senior executive with commercial landscape services firm the Brickman Group, also invested in the Company and was appointed Moore Landscapes’ CEO, complementing Moore’s highly tenured and experienced management team.

Victor Moore commented, “My family has beautified Chicago landscapes and served the Chicago community since 1948, for nearly seventy years. It has been a terrific journey and we are very proud of the organization we have built. We have come to know and respect the ClearLight team and Joel Korte, who have a long-term, customer-focused view, and values very consistent with our own, and we look forward to working with them to continue to grow the Company.”

Andrew Brennan, Partner at ClearLight and former senior executive at commercial landscape services firm ValleyCrest Companies, stated, “Partnering with Moore Landscapes is very exciting for us. Moore has a nearly seventy-year legacy of success in the Chicago market based upon its high integrity culture and a strong focus on taking care of its customers and its people. Victor and Eric Moore have built a great organization and we believe the Company is well positioned for continued growth and success. We believe Joel Korte is a fabulous addition to an already talented team and look forward to supporting him and the entire team.”

“Moore Landscapes has long had a culture of going above and beyond to serve its clients, which has created an outstanding reputation and strong trust-based relationships with a discriminating customer base,” said Joel Korte, the incoming CEO for Moore. “The management team and field teams have incredible tenure and experience and a reputation for delivering consistently high quality service. I’m thrilled to have the opportunity to work with such a highly skilled team and to contribute to the next stage of growth of Moore.”

Michael S. Kaye, Managing Partner at ClearLight, added, “We are impressed with Moore Landscapes’ reputation. We are excited about the landscape industry and to partner with Joel and the rest of the team to continue to expand the positive impact Moore has had on the customers and communities it serves.”
Moore Landscapes provides landscape installation, maintenance, snow, and interior services in and around Chicago, IL. Moore Landscapes was founded in 1948 by Floyd Moore and has been led by Floyd’s sons, Victor and Eric Moore, since the 1980s. Moore Landscapes is based in Northbrook, IL.

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Quarterly Market Pulse Report Also Finds Speed of Exit, Clean Break, and Leaving a Legacy Important to Sellers

Cordo0va, TN  May 15, 2017 Seventy percent (70 percent) of business owners who are selling their companies say that taking care of their employees is a top consideration when evaluating potential buyers. After financial compensation, making sure employees are protected is the No. 1 concern. Business owners also value exiting their business quickly and leaving a legacy when selling their company according to the Q1 2017 Market Pulse Report published by the International Business Brokers Association (IBBA), M&A Source, and the Pepperdine Private Capital Market Project. Results indicate that few sellers are interested in employment contracts and other deal structures that keep them active in the business after the sale.

“When it comes to selling a business, owners care about more than just money,” according to Ron Edmonds of The Principium Group, a member of IBBA and the M&A Source,  “I’ve seen situations where a business owner agrees to less money in order to sell to a buyer whom they believe will protect employees’ jobs and maintain a positive workplace culture.”

Seventy-seven percent (77 percent) of respondents said that deal structure is an important negotiation factor in most transactions. That is followed by negotiations over closing date, and an employment contract or non-compete contract for the seller.

“Both buyers and sellers are increasingly recognizing the high value of human capital,” said Craig Everett, PhD, director of the Pepperdine Private Capital Markets Project. “Negotiating the deal structure often includes protections for employees, such as keeping the company in its current location or agreeing not to reduce the workforce.”

About the Market Pulse Report

The Market Pulse Report compares conditions for businesses being sold on Main Street (values of $0-$2 million) to those being sold in the Lower Middle Market (values of $2 -$50 million). The Q1 2017 survey was completed April 1-17, by 315 business brokers and M&A advisors representing 37 states.

About International Business Brokers Association (IBBA) and the M&A Source

Founded in 1983, IBBA is the largest non-profit association specifically formed to meet the needs of people and firms engaged in various aspects of business brokerage and mergers and acquisitions. The IBBA is a trade association of business brokers providing education, conferences, professional designations, and networking opportunities. For more information about IBBA, visit the website at or follow the IBBA on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.

Founded in 1991, The M&A Source promotes professional development of merger and acquisition professionals so that they may better serve their clients’ needs, and maximize public awareness of professional intermediary services available for middle market merger and acquisition transactions. For more information about the M&A Source visit, or follow The M&A Source on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter.

About the Pepperdine Graziadio School of Business and Management

A leader in cultivating entrepreneurship and digital innovation, the Pepperdine Graziadio

School of Business and Management focuses on the real-world application of MBA-level business concepts. The Graziadio School provides student-focused, globally-oriented education through part-time, full-time, and executive MBA programs at our five Southern California locations, Silicon Valley and Santa Barbara campuses, as well as through online and hybrid formats. In addition, the Graziadio School offers a variety of master of science programs, a bachelor of science in management degree-completion program, and the Presidents and Key Executives MBA, as well as executive education certificate programs. Follow the Graziadio School on Facebook, on Twitter at @GraziadioSchool,  Instagram and LinkedIn.



Ron Edmonds                                     Scott M. Bushkie, CBI, M&AMI

Principium Group                                IBBA Marketing Chair

Member IBBA / M&A Source              Principal, Cornerstone Business Services, Inc.

901-888-7741                                     (920) 436-9890          


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