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VERMONT CASTINGS GROUP ANNOUNCES ACQUISITION BY EMPLOYEES

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by FyreBug, Jul 31, 2013.

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  1. FyreBug

    FyreBug Minister of Fire

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    VERMONT CASTINGS GROUP ANNOUNCES ACQUISITION BY EMPLOYEES
    Creates Industry's Largest Privately Held, Employee-Owned Company

    PARIS, KENTUCKY, July 31, 2013 – Vermont Castings Group, a leading supplier of hearth and grill products throughout North and South America, Asia and Europe, today proudly announced that after a prolonged sale process with many potential buyers, the Company has been acquired by an entity owned by the employees of the Company. As a result of the acquisition, Vermont Castings Group (VCG) will be the largest privately held, employee-owned company in the hearth industry.

    “I can’t be more excited about the direction we are taking Vermont Castings Group,” said Ricardo León, the new Chairman and CEO of Vermont Castings Group. “After listening to all the different proposals and evaluating the options for returning Vermont Castings Group to prominence, the employees realized the best way for our business to succeed was to take back the control and play the leading role in driving the Company's strategic direction. Over the coming weeks and months, we will refocus VCG on the hearth industry, and transition away from non-core activities. We will provide the highest quality products to all our customers, large and small. You won’t find a more motivated Company in the business.”

    The new ownership team is entirely made up by current and former employees including Ricardo León, Pat Kelly, Jess Baldwin and Kirsten Jenkins. Expect to see other familiar faces from the industry returning to Vermont Castings Group, as well.

    As part of this transaction, the Company cancelled the majority of its debt and is emerging in a stronger financial position. “With the financial commitment from the ownership group, an aggressive and focused operational plan, and the support of the senior lenders, we have created the financial flexibility to continue serving and earning the right to grow with our customers,” added Mr. León.

    “We have a lot of work to do, but the optimism has never been higher,” said Jess Baldwin, Senior Vice President of Sales and Customer Service. “Every customer will now be able to put a real face to this business and we are thrilled to be given this opportunity.”

    Bill Tweardy, the former owner and founder of Monessen Hearth Systems added, "I am exceedingly supportive of this transaction, and believe this approach represents the best possible solution for the Company, its employees, and most importantly, its customers. The employees demonstrated remarkable courage and determination in taking back what I am convinced is a great company. I know this is just the beginning for Vermont Castings Group and our customers can expect great things to come."

    For more information please contact Jess Baldwin.

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  2. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage Minister of Fire

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    Good for them. I hope they make a go of it.
  3. FyreBug

    FyreBug Minister of Fire

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    I would be a sad day for the entire industry if they werent able to make it.
  4. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage Minister of Fire

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    And let us hope they make some massive improvements. At one time that company name meant a lot but the past several years have not done them well. Being employee owned, I believe will make a huge difference. They will need a strong leader though to keep them all going in the right directions.
    webby3650 likes this.
  5. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    Hmmm... Since Vermont Castings Group is actually what was Monessen Hearth Systems a few months ago this does not mean a bunch of VC employees just bought VC.

    It means a bunch of Monessen employees just bought VC Group which includes Vermont Castings. And Monessen.
  6. Highbeam

    Highbeam Minister of Fire

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    They cancelled a lot of debt. How does that work? They declared bankruptcy?
  7. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    Nope. The venture capitalists that owned them kept the debt. What there was of it. Monessen didn't absorb any debt buying VC's assets out of bankruptcy so most would have been whatever Monessen had. If any.
  8. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    Ricardo Leon - President Monessen Holding Co.

    Pat Kelly - VP Planning Monessen Holding Co.

    Jess Baldwin - Stove Program Director Monsessen Hearth Systems

    Kirsten Jenkins - VP Monessen Hearth Systems

  9. StoveWannabe

    StoveWannabe Member

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    I hope it goes well, because I like the way their stoves look.
    Trilifter7 likes this.
  10. Joful

    Joful Minister of Fire

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    Check that out... so many here complaining that their wives are not into this whole woodstove thing, and two (or three?) of the four lead exec's at Monessen are women. :)
    n3pro and Trilifter7 like this.
  11. STOVEGUY11

    STOVEGUY11 Feeling the Heat

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    Wow!
  12. mellow

    mellow Resident Stove Connoisseur

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    Interesting, seems like a play on words if you ask me. They have a lot of work cut out for them, they have burned quite a few bridges.
  13. Highbeam

    Highbeam Minister of Fire

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    That's why it tanked.....

    Sorry, couldn't resist. I buy that Kirsten is female but Jess isn't so clear and Pat is an obvious non gender specific name.
  14. Joful

    Joful Minister of Fire

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    jbaldwin.jpg
    Highbeam likes this.
  15. realstihl

    realstihl Feeling the Heat

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    Makes me wonder if my stoves lifetime warranty is still good. Who knows?
  16. clemsonfor

    clemsonfor Minister of Fire

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    Good luck on a lifetime waarrenty on anything. I know both a jess and oat both male. Don't personally know any females with those names.
  17. peakbagger

    peakbagger Minister of Fire

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    Time to get the pickle Hill gang out of retirement, the founders were a bunch of hippie college students based out of Warren
    Defiant likes this.
  18. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    I worked with a gal named Jess, short for Jessica.
  19. Highbeam

    Highbeam Minister of Fire

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    Despite that photo, I am not convinced of gender. Not even a "she" in her quote.
    Tom Wallace and n3pro like this.
  20. clemsonfor

    clemsonfor Minister of Fire

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    Haha
  21. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    The pic is Roxanne Washington who wrote the article. Jess is a guy and on the board of HPBA.
  22. webbie

    webbie Seasoned Moderator Staff Member

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    I like how the Press Release makes it seem that the "old" employees are buying it when it may actually be the same folks who had a hand in it's ruin!

    Maybe someone here who is closer to the company can comment on whether these people were involved in the sad decisions they've made over the past couple of years...

    I have to assume the price is total bargain basement. There was a time, way back when, when 5-8 million would have bought the whole deal. CFM raised the value (based on market cap) to 200-300 million. I can''t imagine anyone paying much over liquidation value at this point.

    Now I gotta see if they want to be a GOLD Sponsor. Jotul let their lapse recently!
    ;)

    Also, I have decided to lower my consulting rate to $250 an hour if they want to hire me.
  23. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    Well there went the employee Christmas party. :(
  24. webby3650

    webby3650 Master of Fire

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    I will be your assistant, for free!:cool:
    First on the agenda: ditch the entire rear combustion system made up of parts that have no business in a woodstove.
    Second: 2in1, really? Lets just try to get 1 figured out first!;lol
    Defiant and Trilifter7 like this.
  25. Defiant

    Defiant Vermont Castings Geek

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    I know a couple of those guys!!!!!!
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