July 29, 2021

Specialty Sales Completes Two Add-On Acquisitions

July 29, 2021

Specialty Sales, LLC (www.hoofstrong.com) (“Specialty Sales” or the “Company”), a Benford Capital Partners, LLC (“Benford Capital” or “BCP”) portfolio company, is pleased to announce two recent acquisitions: (i) Environmental Technologies, Inc. (“Enviro-Tech” or “ETI”) and (ii) Bovistride, LLC (“Bovistride” or “BRx”).  The addition of Enviro-Tech and Bovistride further strengthens the Company’s position as the market leading provider of automated hoof bath systems and preventative hoof care treatment products for commercial dairies in the United States.  The combined businesses will be led by Specialty Sales’ management team, including CEO Don Alsup, VP of Sales Max Merenz, VP of Operations Lisa Lincoln, and CFO James Baker.  ETI’s and BRx’s founders will assist with the transition of customer and supplier relationships through post-closing consulting arrangements.  Certain key sales, field service, delivery and customer support employees were hired directly by Specialty Sales in connection with each respective asset purchase.  The increased scale and reach of the combined businesses will result in stronger levels of customer support and service, as well as additional opportunities for Specialty Sales, ETI and BRx employees in the years ahead.

ETI operated a similar “razor / razor blade” business model to Specialty Sales, offering the installation and maintenance of hoof care treatment systems to its commercial dairy customer base in exchange for exclusive supply contracts to provide preventative chemical treatment products on a recurring basis.  Hoof care treatment products are consistently utilized to help prevent the spread of hoof borne disease; a preventative hoof care program minimizes lameness, and keeps cattle consistently milking and generating revenue for the dairyman.

“I am excited about ETI’s potential in partnership with Specialty Sales,” said ETI Founder, John Eakin.  “Specialty was the most logical acquiror to both fulfill my retirement and estate planning goals, while also ensuring a seamless transition for our long-tenured, loyal customer base.”

Don Alsup, CEO of Specialty Sales added, “We’ve gotten to know John well over the last few years; ETI built a very nice business and we’re pleased he chose Specialty to guide ETI in its next phase of growth and success.  The entire Specialty team looks forward to welcoming our new ETI employees and continuing to offer exceptional service and best-in-class hoof care treatment products to our combined customer base.”

The second add-on acquisition, Bovistride, offers a proprietary, patent-protected hoof bath system which Specialty Sales can now market to its successful and growing customer base of 1,000+ large commercial dairy customers.  The Bovistride system uniquely monitors and appropriately doses preventative hoof care products, resulting in consistent treatment from the first through last cow through the hoof bath.  Specialty Sales will offer the Bovistride system under its current operating model, which includes the free installation and ongoing maintenance of a hoof care treatment system in exchange for an exclusive supply agreement whereby Specialty Sales supplies and delivers the treatment chemicals used in the system.  Specialty Sales will also support Bovistride’s current commercial dairy customer base and welcomes the opportunity to become the preferred provider of hoof care treatment products to Bovistride’s legacy customers as well.

“The Bovistride Rx system was a compelling product addition for Specialty Sales,” said Don Alsup, CEO of Specialty.  “With the largest customer base of commercial dairies for hoof care treatment products in the United States; our large, captive sales force and strategically placed distribution facilities will help maximize the Bovistride system’s market potential in the years ahead.”

Roderick Murphy, Founder of Bovistride, added, “I have a great deal of respect for the business that Don and his team have built over the last 20+ years, and I’m confident I found the right owner for this unique product and for our loyal customers.”

Each add-on acquisition was directly sourced by the investment team at Benford Capital, led by Ben Riefe, Managing Director.  “Specialty Sales has been an outstanding investment to date, and we have been actively pursuing add-on acquisitions of related businesses to help Don and his team accelerate growth and solidify their market leadership position in the dairy hoof health market,” added Mr. Riefe.  “We look forward to assisting with the operational integration of these two businesses, while also continuing to pursue additional tuck ins that support the overall health and wellness of commercial dairy cattle.”

First Merchants Bank, the Company’s incumbent lender, provided financing in support of each add-on acquisition.  Ice Miller LLP provided legal counsel to Specialty Sales.

For any questions or additional add-on acquisition ideas for Specialty Sales, please contact Ben Riefe (ben@benfordcapital.com).

About Benford Capital Partners

Founded in 2004, Benford Capital (www.benfordcapital.com) is a Chicago-based private equity firm focused on buying and building leading lower middle market companies in partnership with founders and management.  Since inception, Benford Capital has acquired 28 companies, including several add-on acquisitions, and currently owns 12 platform companies.  Industry areas of focus include industrial technology, consumer products and food, B2B e-commerce, and agricultural products and services.