Dickinson Williams advises on the sale of Automotive Parts and Services Holdings

Dickinson Williams & Company served as the exclusive financial advisor to Automotive Parts and Services Holdings, LLC (“APSH”), an online distributor of automotive repair parts and a provider of vehicle inspection services to the vehicle service contract sector, in its sale to Marubeni Corporation (“Marubeni”).

PSH and its wholly owned subsidiaries, C&K Auto Parts, LLC (“C&K”) and Warranty Inspection Services, LLC (“WIS”), are headquartered in Richmond, Virginia.  C&K and WIS were founded in 1994 and 2003, respectively, by Chris and Mitch Rand, and Mulberry Investment Group, led by Josh Wishnack and Rick Morris, acquired a majority interest in APSH in 2008.  C&K has grown to become the largest, pure-play provider of automotive parts to vehicle service contract and extended warranty companies, while WIS has become one of the largest automotive inspection companies in the U.S., specializing in mechanical breakdown inspections.

Selecting and ordering appropriate automotive parts at the right price is a time-consuming and labor-intensive process.  APSH has established a supply chain of OEM, aftermarket, recycled, and remanufactured parts, as well as a network of more than 300 inspectors, to provide online service that promptly selects appropriate and competitively priced parts, places orders, and verifies repair claims for vehicle service contract and extended warranty companies.  Because APSH is able to instantly select and present compatible parts from the 21 million SKUs in its procurement network, it has a trusted and preferred status across multiple prominent vendors and customers throughout the United States.

Marubeni has been expanding its aftermarket automotive parts distribution business in the United States since 2016.  Through this acquisition, Marubeni will grow its partnerships with parts suppliers in the growing U.S. automotive parts distribution market, where customers value immediate delivery, availability, and a wide selection of parts at various price points.  In addition, Marubeni will expand its e-commerce presence to meet the demand of a new segment of insurance company customers.

“We are very excited to be a part of Marubeni Corporation,” said Josh Wishnack, CEO of APSH. “Marubeni’s strength in the automotive sector is a great strategic fit with C&K and WIS, and their long-term investing approach ensures a stable and growing platform for our team members for years to come.  Dickinson Williams did a fantastic job helping us find the ideal partner and successfully close the transaction.  We were impressed by the professionalism, hard work, and thoughtfulness of each member of the Dickinson Williams team at every step of the process.”

“We are pleased to announce another cross-border transaction for Dickinson Williams,” said James Gilmore, Managing Director at Dickinson Williams.  “APSH has achieved impressive growth and market leadership based on its comprehensive solutions tailored to the vehicle service contract industry.  The company’s proprietary online platform and customer integration strategy have proven to make the auto parts ordering process easier, offer greater supply chain transparency, and reduce friction for its customers.  We are excited for the APSH team and the strong strategic fit with Marubeni’s global automotive businesses.”

Williams Mullen served as legal counsel to APSH, and Mayer Brown LLP served as legal counsel to Marubeni in the transaction.

About Marubeni Corporation:

Marubeni Corporation (TSE: 8002) and its consolidated subsidiaries use their broad business networks, both within Japan and overseas, to conduct a diverse range of business activities across a wide range of industries globally.  The company operates through the following segments: Food & Consumer Products; Chemical & Forest Products; Energy & Metals; Transportation & Industrial Machinery; and Power Projects & Plants.  Marubeni Corporation was founded in 1858 and is headquartered in Tokyo, Japan.

About Dickinson Williams & Company:

Dickinson Williams & Company is an independent investment banking firm led by industry veterans with over 80 years of combined investment banking, financing, and operating experience.  The firm provides objective, experience-based advisory services to lower middle market companies with enterprise values up to $150 million.  The firm provides sell-side, buy-side, private placement, recapitalization, and strategic advisory services to family and closely held businesses, corporations, and private equity groups, and has a broad cross-section of transaction and industry experience in the industrials, business services, distribution, healthcare, and consumer sectors.

John C. Dickinson
Managing Director

James A. Gilmore
Managing Director

Harold J. Williams III
Managing Director

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