By Soyoung Kim and Greg Roumeliotis
NEW YORK, Jan 29 Private equity firm Platinum
Equity is exploring a sale of Keystone Automotive Operations,
which makes specialty auto parts such as grill guards, roof
racks and superchargers that make cars faster and sleeker, three
sources familiar with the matter said.
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, the sources said.
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, Pennsylvania-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.
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 for
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