A consortium of private equity firms is about to close what would be one of the largest acquisitions of all time. The deal concerns the US medical supply company Medline Industries Inc. for over 30 billion dollars.
The consortium is made up of Blackstone, Hellman & Friedman e Carlyle, and according to what Bloomberg and the Wall Street Journal report is in advanced talks with Medline and the finalization could be a matter of days. In the last few hours, negotiations have accelerated and saw the consortium “overtake” against the Canadian investment giant Brookfield Asset Management.
A family-run colossus
As Bloomberg points out, Medline is the largest US private manufacturer and distributor of medical supplies such as gloves, gowns, and examination tables for hospitals and doctors’ offices. The company, which is based in Northfield, Illinois, is run by the billionaire Mills family: CEO Charlie Mills, his cousin Andy Mills, who is president, and chief operating officer Jim Abrams, who is Charlie’s brother-in-law. .
Charlie and Andy took over the company in 1997 from their respective fathers, Jim and Jon Mills. The brothers founded the company together in 1966, taking inspiration from their grandfather who helped sew gowns for surgeons in a Chicago hospital before World War I.
Medline spawned $ 17.5 billion of sales in 2020.
A three-way contest
At least eight acquisition companies were preparing bids for Medline last month: on June 1, the bidding was restricted to three contenders: the Blackstone consortium, the Canadian Brookfield bid, and another consortium that included Bain Capital, Advent International e Cvc Capital Partners. The latter consortium, however, decided not to submit the final offers after the deadline was abruptly accelerated by several weeks.