Telular to be acquired by Avista Capital in $253 million deal

Private equity firm looking to 'drive next phase of growth' for Telguard parent
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Wednesday, May 1, 2013

CHICAGO and NEW YORK—Telular Corp., which provides cellular alarm communications equipment through its Telguard division, announced on Monday that it is being acquired by Avista Capital Partners in a deal valued at $253 million.

Avista, a New York-based private equity firm that focuses on energy, health care and communications companies, is assuming $18.5 million debt as part of the deal, according to a news release from both companies. Avista is paying $12.61 per share, a premium of 31 percent from Telular’s closing price Friday of $9.63.

Telular CEO Joe Beatty called the deal “a very positive event for our shareholders” and said it will allow the Chicago-based company to expand on its success.

“For our customers, we will continue to deliver the best remote wireless monitoring and tracking solutions available in the markets we serve,” Beatty said in the release.

Shawn Welsh, vice president of marketing and business development for Telular, said it would be “business as usual” for Telguard customers under Avista’s ownership. Telguard provides 3G/4G cellular alarm communicators for residential and commercial markets and recently teamed with Utah-based Mytrex to develop a self-contained cellular PERS unit

“The acquisition of Telular … is further validation of the company’s leadership position in the machine-to-machine [M2M] and security communications space,” Welsh told Security Systems News in an emailed statement. “For our Telguard customers …we will continue to operate in the same way that we do today, with a continued focus on strong customer service.”

Brendan Scollans, a partner at Avista, said Telular’s strong M2M background and “compelling” recurring revenue business model made it an attractive acquisition.

“We are looking forward to working with Telular’s talented management team to drive the next phase of the company’s growth both organically and through acquisitions,” Scollans said in a prepared statement.

The deal appears to be a first for Avista in the security space. On its website, the company lists 31 current investments and 54 past investments, all in the energy, health care, communications and media verticals. James David, a media contact for Avista, declined to comment on the acquisition beyond what the company included in the news release.