Citizens Bank has announced Citizens Commercial Banking is providing $21.5 million to Birmingham’s private-equity firm Strength Capital Partners to support the acquisition of North Carolina’s ESP Associates Inc. Citizens is the sole lender and administrative agent.
The agreement includes a term loan and a working capital line of credit.
Strength Capital will use ESP as a platform to roll acquisitions into as well as continue expanding the company’s geographic reach. ESP has grown to 13 offices in seven states since 2012, when it had five offices in two states.
ESP provides engineering surveying, and planning services for clients in transportation, public safety, land development, and energy. It employs almost 400 people and had 2017 revenue of $53 million. Management retained equity in the company and will continue to run the business.
“At Citizens, we try to think about the needs of our clients from their point of view and offer a range of solutions,” says Rick Hampson, president of Citizens Bank, Michigan. “Providing acquisition financing is just one of the ways that Citizens delivers substantial value for our clients at every stage of their business life cycle.”
This is the second deal in which Citizens is a lender to Strength Capital Partners. The other company is ARCH Global Precision.
“Citizens bankers are trusted strategic and financial advisers who delivered clear and objective advice that has helped us grow and enhance our business,” says Steve LaBarre, a partner at Strength Capital Partners.
Citizens is headquartered in Rhode Island and had $153.5 billion in assets as of March 31.