Press Release Details

Levine Leichtman Capital Partners Sells Smith System

11/07/2023

Levine Leichtman Capital Partners (“LLCP”), a Los Angeles-based private equity firm, announced that it has sold its portfolio company Smith System Driver Improvement Institute, Inc. (“Smith System” or the “Company”) to MidOcean Partners. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Smith System is a leading provider of workplace safety training solutions and is widely recognized as the “gold standard” provider of driver safety training for large commercial fleets. The Company’s compelling value proposition enables clients to improve employee safety, reduce costs, and comply with stringent regulations. Smith System delivers its proprietary safety training content through multiple modalities (on-the-road, hybrid, and eLearning) and has trained millions of drivers across 100+ countries and 15+ languages. The company was founded in 1952 and is headquartered in Arlington, Texas.

Matthew Rich, Partner of LLCP, said, “Education & Training has long been a core LLCP investment vertical, and the significant growth and transformation of Smith System during our ownership is a classic example of our sector expertise and value creation playbook at work. During our partnership, the Company scaled rapidly through several successful growth initiatives, including significant innovation of eLearning content, expansion of online training capabilities, strategic growth into adjacent end-markets, and execution of a successful M&A strategy. Smith System is exceptionally positioned for continued growth, and we wish Tony and the entire management team all the best in the future.”

Tony Douglas, President & CEO of Smith System, commented, “Our management team is grateful for LLCP’s partnership and guidance throughout our transformation. As a result of their strategic and financial support, Smith System has grown significantly, enabling our Company to further our mission of saving lives. The Company’s success has been a collective effort, and we are excited to embark on an exciting new chapter in our history.”

The sale of Smith System is LLCP’s 17th successful exit since December 2020. Smith System was an investment of Levine Leichtman Capital Partners Fund V, L.P.

Robert W. Baird & Co. and Kirkland & Ellis LLP advised LLCP and Smith System in connection with the transaction.

About Levine Leichtman Capital Partners

Levine Leichtman Capital Partners, LLC is a middle-market private equity firm with a 39-year track record of investing across various targeted sectors, including Franchising & Multi-unit, Business Services, Education & Training and Engineered Products & Manufacturing. LLCP utilizes a differentiated Structured Private Equity investment strategy, combining debt and equity capital investments in portfolio companies. LLCP believes that by investing in a combination of debt and equity securities, it offers management teams growth capital in a highly tailored, flexible investment structure that can be a more attractive alternative than traditional private equity.

LLCP’s global team of dedicated investment professionals is led by nine partners who have worked at LLCP for an average of 19 years. Since inception, LLCP has managed approximately $14.1 billion of institutional capital across 15 investment funds and has invested in over 100 portfolio companies. LLCP currently manages $9.3 billion of assets and has offices in Los Angeles, New York, Chicago, Charlotte, Miami, London, Stockholm, The Hague and Frankfurt.

Mark Semer/Sara Widmann
Gasthalter & Co.
(212) 257 4170
llcp@gasthalter.com

Source: Levine Leichtman Capital Partners, LLC