GOVERNOR KAINE ANNOUNCES 1,000 SAVED JOBS FOR WASHINGTON COUNTY
-Administration facilitates agreement to maintain operations of major employer-
RICHMOND - Governor Timothy M. Kaine today announced that 1,000 jobs at Bristol Compressors will be saved through the purchase of Bristol Compressors by KPS Capital Partners, a New York-based investment firm. The KPS transaction will provide access to substantial capital to be invested in the further development of Bristol Compressors International, the company’s new name under KPS ownership. The Virginia Tobacco Indemnification and Revitalization Commission and Washington County committed a combined $1 million to assist KPS with the transaction.
“I commend Washington County and the Tobacco Commission, particularly Senator Wampler and Delegate Kilgore, for taking immediate action on behalf of this vital enterprise and these Virginia employees,” said Governor Kaine. “KPS will work to get the cost structure of the company in a position to successfully compete in the marketplace, and I am pleased the state was able to move quickly with local and regional officials to help close this deal.”
Bristol Compressors manufactures compressors used in air conditioning units and heat pumps. The company’s products are used for original manufacturer applications and wholesale distribution in more than 50 countries around the world.
David Shapiro, a Managing Partner of KPS, said, "We are excited to be the catalyst that transforms Bristol into a thriving competitor in its industry. Bristol successfully developed market-leading products that will enable it to prosper under our ownership and continue as Washington County's largest employer. The Company’s established franchise, highly regarded brands and commitment to customer service form a terrific base from which to grow the business.”
“I’m pleased that this effort with KPS will keep the Washington County region’s largest employer operational,” said Senator William Wampler, Jr. “This company’s success is crucial to the economy of this area and we will do what we can to facilitate a seamless transition.”
“This agreement is a great example of the Tobacco Commission’s duty to promote the economies of historically tobacco-dependent communities,” said Delegate Terry G. Kilgore, Commission Vice Chairman. “Our priority is to ensure that our hardworking Virginians remain gainfully employed and we’re pleased to assist this project.”
"The Washington County Board of Supervisors enthusiastically supported this project in order to preserve valuable jobs for our citizens," said Kenneth O. Reynolds, Chairman. "We also recognize the significant impact of this operation on our local and regional economy through the purchase of goods and services from many other small businesses. This is good news all the way around!"
KPS Capital Partners, LP is the manager of the KPS Special Situations Funds, a family of private equity funds with more than $600 million of committed capital focused on constructive investing in restructurings, turnarounds and other special situations. KPS has created new companies to purchase operating assets out of bankruptcy; established stand-alone entities to operate divested assets; and recapitalized highly leveraged public and private companies. The KPS investment strategy targets companies with strong franchises that are experiencing operating and financial problems. KPS invests its capital concurrently with a turnaround plan predicated on cost reduction, capital investment, and capital availability. Typically, the KPS turnaround plan is accompanied by a financial restructuring of the company's liabilities.