Dallas, TX (December 30, 2020) – Skylark Private Equity Partners, LP (“Skylark”), a Dallas-based private equity firm focused primarily on investments in entrepreneur-led businesses in the lower middle market, announced it has closed an investment in Claridge Products (“Claridge” or the “Company”), a manufacturer of writing surfaces and related products for businesses and schools. Terms of the investment were not disclosed.
Founded in 1947, Claridge has long served as a leading provider of writing surfaces to K-12 schools across North America. Over its history, Claridge has added manufacturing and distribution capabilities, developed new products, and expanded its solutions to address corporate commercial customers. The Company currently has a portfolio of 2,000 products with over 24,000 configurations, offering both stock and customized writing surfaces and related solutions.
Claridge has been owned by the Clavey family of Harrison, AR since its founding. Marcus McNew, Claridge’s Treasurer, will assume the role of President and will continue to lead daily operations in partnership with Skylark.
“This new partnership represents an exciting opportunity for our team to leverage Skylark’s expertise and accelerate our Company’s growth,” said Mr. McNew. “In the last few years, Claridge has delivered on a combination of product innovation and operational capabilities to benefit commercial businesses and schools. Skylark’s operating and manufacturing experience will support the enhancement of our offerings for the benefit of existing and future customers.”
“An entrepreneur-led business with demonstrable market leadership, Claridge is an ideal first investment for Skylark,” said Hunter Peterson, Skylark’s Managing Partner. “Claridge delivers highly customized offerings at competitive price points. The Company is uniquely positioned to address changing customer preferences, particularly as businesses and schools modify their environments to meet social distancing protocols. Skylark is thrilled to partner with Marcus and Claridge’s senior leadership team of Gregg Steliga, Wade Fuller, and Kurt James.”
Partner Marshall Viney and Principal Chase Eckert worked alongside Mr. Peterson on the transaction. Kirkland & Ellis LLP advised Skylark on the transaction, WhiteHorse Capital Management provided financing, and Strategic M&A Advisors brokered the transaction.
About Claridge Products
As the leader in writing surfaces and functional space division, Claridge inspires collaboration with best-in-class products that are produced in the USA across three manufacturing facilities and distributed throughout North America. With a broad product portfolio and the ability to deliver customized solutions, Claridge is uniquely qualified to provide businesses, general contractors and schools with the highest quality writing surfaces and a unique customer experience. For more information, or to design your next glass or porcelain board, visit www.claridgeproducts.com.