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Report: Private Equity Firm May Sell NTP Parent

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January 31, 2013 by   Leave a Comment

Private equity firm Platinum Equity is exploring a sale of Keystone Automotive Operations Inc., which makes specialty auto parts and is also parent to NTP Distribution Inc.

According to a Reuters report citing “three sources familiar with the matter,” Platinum Equity, which acquired Keystone through an out-of-court debt restructuring in 2011, has hired investment banks Baird and UBS to run a sale process that could fetch between $400 million and $500 million.

Representatives for Platinum, Keystone, UBS and Baird were not immediately reached for comment. The sources declined to be named because the matter is not public.

Exeter, Pa.-based Keystone sells aftermarket automotive equipment and accessories in North America, such as light truck accessories, specialty wheels, tires and suspension parts and high performance products. It acquired NTP in October of 2011.

Keystone changed hands among private equity owners a few times over the past decade.

Private equity firm Bain Capital LLC bought Keystone in 2003 from investors led by buyout firm Advent International.

But the company, which makes discretionary items tied to the economic cycles, grappled with the recession in the following years and Bain’s equity was wiped out when Keystone agreed to an out-of-court restructuring in 2011.

Platinum Equity, one of the company’s bondholders, acquired a majority interest in Keystone by converting its debt to equity.

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