Less than a year after co-leading the acquisition of the wholesale bicycle operations of Advanced Sports Enterprises (ASE) in bankruptcy court, Tiger Capital Group has sold its stake in the newly formed BikeCo, LLC to joint venture partner Advanced Holdings Co. Ltd.
As previously reported, the bankruptcy court approved the joint venture’s winning bid of more than $23 million for the wholesale assets of ASE.
“Throughout the entire post-auction process, Tiger helped preserve our company while instituting key efficiencies to strengthen our business,” said Frank Zimmer, who was promoted from VP, Sales to President of BikeCo on August 1. “The Tiger team, with Ryan Davis as our interim CEO, used their industry contacts and business acumen to implement cost-cutting measures, while protecting the company’s vision. We now have a stronger balance sheet and a clear path for future success.”
Zimmer, an 18-year veteran of the bicycle industry, had been with ASE for the past 14 years. He is part of an existing management team retained by BikeCo to preside over the manufacturing, marketing and distribution of the Fuji, Breezer, Tuesday, and SE bicycle brands to a dealer network of approximately 700 independent bike shops throughout the United States. The business today employs more than 40 people, the vast majority of whom are located at its 70,000-square-foot warehouse and headquarters on Dutton Road in northeast Philadelphia. BikeCo recently extended its lease for the site.
According to Davis, one of the key challenges facing the new ownership and management team was retaining BikeCo’s dealer network during a period earlier this year when outside liquidators were selling off inventory from ASE’s now-defunct Performance Bicycle retail operation. At that time, Performance Bicycle had over 100 company-owned locations throughout the U.S.
“The resilience of the BikeCo team through such a tough period is a testament to their character,” said Davis, Managing Director of Tiger’s Valuation Services unit. “The entire organization worked tirelessly to retain the dealer network, which demonstrates their dedication to their customers and to the sport. We’re extremely proud to have been their partner, and we look forward to watching them continue to succeed.”
Andrew Babcock, the Tiger Managing Director who helped lead the deal’s financing, added: “We are gratified to have arranged the creative financing structure and restructuring plan that shored up BikeCo’s balance sheet and enhanced its asset value. Most importantly, 43 jobs were saved, and these great brands are now positioned for success.”