With Acquisition of Outdoor Living Brands, Lynx Franchising Makes Home Services Play | Franchise Mergers and Acquisitions

The strong focus of Conserva Irrigation, Outdoor Lighting Perspectives and Archadeck was a major reason for Lynx Franchising to acquire Outdoor Living Brands. “This was a very strategic, transformative portion of the ground,” said Lynx CEO Russ Reynolds of the move into outdoor home services. “There is a tremendous overlap between commercial and home services,” he continued, with Lynx aiming to create “a best of album” of brands.

With the acquisition, which was closed on September 9 and announced this week, Outdoor Living Brands joins a Lynx portfolio with sales of $ 700 million across three brands: Jan-Pro, the commercial cleaning franchise with over 9,000 units, the textile, textile and electronics restorer FRSTeam and Intelligent Office, a franchise for temporary and virtual office space. Together, the OLB brands add more than 250 locations and sales of $ 123.5 million to the Lynx portfolio. The terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Chris Grandpre, who founded Outdoor Living Brands in 2008 and will step down from his CEO role as part of the sale to join Lynx’s board of directors, said the “great in-depth interest” in the company drove OLB, investment bank Boxwood Partners to engage summer to explore a possible sale. When Lynx was officially launched, “we worked very hard over a 30-day period to make this happen,” he said.

Chris Grandpre

Chris Grandpre, who founded Outdoor Living Brands and served as CEO in 2008, will leave this role and join Lynx’s board of directors.

“We have found a fit with the strategy and most importantly with the culture in their diversification efforts,” said Grandpre, particularly in the areas of “training, franchisee support and business administration promotion”.

“Thanks to Chris and the management team. Things like that don’t come together very often in this timeframe, “Reynolds said, noting that Outdoor Living Brands are” highly organized. “

“Usually sellers have to catch up, but they didn’t,” he continued.

Scott Zide, President and COO of Outdoor Living Brands, will continue to lead the brands and work with the Lynx executive team. OLB will eventually serve as the residential platform for Lynx, which will “selectively and surgically” acquire additional brands or even incubate founder-led concepts, Reynolds said.

But, Reynolds said, “Job # 1” is helping OLB’s existing franchisees, who are growing rapidly and have had a strong 2020 as demand for home improvement services increased as consumers spend more time during the pandemic spent at home.

“We are aware of the COVID-19 crisis,” Reynolds said when asked how Lynx assessed the performance of Outdoor Living Brands’ concepts in the context of the COVID-19 spending postponement.

“We are experienced and vigilant about how we think about the COVID bump,” he continued, noting that Jan-Pro had significant sales growth in 2020 with its cleaning and disinfection services and “we saw people left, jumped right and in the middle ”. to the disinfection business. “

As reported in item 19 of the Franchise Disclosure Document, Conserva Irrigation franchisees, who provide repair, maintenance, service, design, and construction of irrigation systems, increased gross sales in 2020 by 33.2 percent to $ 704,514 for those who have been at least have been active for two years. (Eleven of the 15 reporting franchisees operate multiple territories). Archadeck franchisees’ average gross revenue in 2020 was $ 1.68 million, with system revenue increasing 35.7 percent to $ 74.3 million, according to the brand’s FDD. The average revenue of 39 Outdoor Lighting Perspectives franchisees in a single area was $ 568,806 in 2020.

Russ Reynolds, CEO, Lynx Franchising

Russ Reynolds joined Lynx Franchising in 2018 after an 18-year career at Batteries Plus as CEO.

Lynx Franchising, Reynolds said, was drawn to the “embedded recurring revenue within the portfolio.” Take Conserva Irrigation, for example, he said. “Someone who runs over a sprinkler head in the morning” and needs a repair “won’t change because of COVID”.

He and Grandpre also pointed to a shift in consumer home spending that began before the pandemic, as Grandpre said the trend towards remote working and growth in the suburban housing market will only continue. “The heart and soul of our business is the suburban dual income home,” Grandpre said. He also pointed to investments by Outdoor Living Brands prior to the pandemic, which contributed to sales growth.

That investment included creating a Quick Start program to guide franchisees “from the moment they sign” their franchise agreement, Grandpre said. It includes both software and staff support “to shorten the path to breakeven and shorten the path to reaching our AUVs”.

MidOcean Partners, added Reynolds, is also ready to invest in training and franchise development to expand the systems.

MidOcean Partners, based in New York, whose holdings include FullSpeed ​​Automotive, the parent company of the oil change franchises Grease Monkey and SpeeDee, acquired Lynx Franchising in January 2021 from Incline Equity Partners, which Lynx had held since October 2016.

Lynx, based in Alpharetta, Georgia and formerly Premium Franchise Brands, changed its name in 2019 after acquiring Intelligent Office. In June 2020, FRSTeam bought it. It acquired The Content Specialists, a hard content recovery company, in early September with plans to merge it with FRSTeam.

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