GNC Acquired by Capital Firm, Teachers Fund

April 9, 2007

2 Min Read
GNC Acquired by Capital Firm, Teachers Fund

PITTSBURGH—The ownership of GNC Parent Corp., which had been controlled by Apollo Management LP, has again changed hands, this time purchased by affiliates from both Ares Management LLC, a private equity firm and owner of brands such as Samsonite and Maidenform, and Teachers’ Private Capital, the investment arm of Ontario Teacher’s Pension Board. The total enterprise value of the acquisition was reported at $1.65 billion, pending certain adjustments.

“We would very much like to thank Joe Fortunato, the rest of the management team and the employees of GNC for their efforts over the last several years,” said Andy Jhawar, a Senior Partner at Apollo, which held 97 percent of GNC shares and approved the merger in early February.

“GNC is a terrific company with one of the best brand names in the industry and we know that GNC will be in great hands with its new owners.”

“We are looking forward to our partnership with Ares Management and Teachers’ Private Capital,” said Joe Fortunato, president and chief executive officer (CEO) of GNC. “Their strong, committed financial sponsorship will allow GNC to continue its track record of growth and partnership with our franchisees, customers and suppliers.”

David Kaplan, a senior partner at Ares Management reported his company is looking forward to working again with Teachers’ Private Capital and praised GNC senior management. “GNC is a marketleading retail platform that will be a terrific addition to our existing investment portfolio of retail and consumer product companies,” he said. “Furthermore, we share management’s vision for the company and believe that the business is well positioned for future growth.”

In conjunction with the merger, General Nutrition Centers Inc. ( announced it had signed a $735.0 million credit agreement with a syndicate of financial institutions. The loans are secured by first priority pledges of the equity interests of GNC, its domestic subsidiaries and certain of its foreign subsidiaries and first priority liens on substantially all of the assets of the domestic subsidiaries of the GNC. The term loan matures in September 2013 and the revolving loan matures in March 2012. The term loan and an initial borrowing of approximately $10.4 million under the revolving credit facility provide for alternative interest rates at GNC’s election.

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