Daily News: June 5, 2012

GB Merchant, Bruckmann, Rosser Complete Sale of Things Remembered

Bruckmann, Rosser, Sherrill & Co. (BRS) and GB Merchant Partners (GBMP), two private equity firms with extensive experience in the retail sector, announced that they have completed the sale of Things Remembered Inc. for $295 million, to Madison Dearborn Partners, a private equity firm with expertise in consumer focused companies.

Things Remembered is a specialty retailer that sells personalized gifts for all occasions through its robust online business and 640 stores located throughout the U.S. and Canada.

Michael Anthony, CEO of Things Remembered, said; “GBMP and BRS were excellent partners, providing valuable strategic guidance and capital support throughout the investment period. We now look forward to working with Madison Dearborn and benefiting from its expertise, as we remain focused on supporting our customers with the highest service and quality.”

BRS and GBMP jointly acquired Things Remembered in 2006 from Luxottica Group S.p.A. Under BRS’ and GBMP’s ownership and the managerial talents of Anthony and his team, Things Remembered grew significantly as a result of an improvement in nearly all aspects of its business.

“We are extremely pleased with the successful outcome of the Things Remembered investment during what was a very difficult economic environment,” said Thomas Baldwin, BRS managing director. “The Things Remembered management team has done a terrific job. We are proud of our association with Things Remembered and are confident that the company will continue to thrive in the years ahead.”

“Things Remembered is a truly differentiated retailer with a number of attractive growth opportunities through its stores and its direct commerce channel,”” said Rob Selati, a managing director of Madison Dearborn Partners. “We are very excited to have made this investment and we look forward to working with Michael and his team to continue growing Things Remembered.”

Regarding the successful exit of their investment, GBMP partner, Jamie Dworkin, said: “This was an extremely complicated transaction. It involved a carve-out from a large corporate parent, and the re-positioning and re-merchandising of a 50 year old, specialty retailer. Michael Anthony and his team accomplished all of that in the face of the recession with the assistance of a strong board and a patient lending group.”

Things Remembered Inc., Bruckmann, Rosser, Sherrill & Co. and GB Merchant Partners were advised by Oppenheimer & Co. Inc.