Family-Owned Industrial Conglomerate Standard Industries To Buy Chemical Giant W.R. Grace For $7 Billion

For nearly six months, Standard Industries co-CEOs David Millstone and David Winter have been trying to acquire specialty chemicals firm W.R. Grace. Today, they succeeded, reaching an agreement to buy all outstanding shares, at a price of $70 cash, for a total transaction value of some $7 billion.

New York city-based Standard’s related investment arm, 40 North, already owns 14.9% of the common shares. The deal, which includes investment funds affiliated with Apollo Global Management
as a capital partner, is expected to close in the fourth quarter.

Forbes profiled Standard Industries, the parent of the country’s largest roofing company, GAF, earlier this month. The industrial powerhouse, ranked No. 69 on Forbes’ list of America’s largest private companies. dates back to 1983, when corporate raider Sam Heyman, a one-time member of the Forbes 400 and the father-in-law of Millstone and Winter, won a proxy battle for roofing-and-chemicals company GAF. Today, the group has revenue of $6.4 billion and Ebitda of roughly $1.4 billion, and has been on a mission to use use technology to change the way that people think about the simple notion of having a roof over one’s head.

With the deal, Millstone and Winter are in many ways bringing the business full circle to before they sold off the specialty chemicals operation that Heyman had acquired as part of GAF. In a statement, Millstone and Winter said that they are “thrilled to welcome Grace to the Standard Industries family,” while Grace CEO Hudson La Force said that he was “confident that our agreement with Standard Industries Holdings is the best path forward for Grace and our shareholders.”

Grace’s 2020 revenue was $1.7 billion, down from nearly $2 billion the previous year. In an interview last December, Winter told Forbes: ”The math and the numbers and the value destruction frankly speaks for itself.”

This story is developing.

For more on Standard Industries see our profile, “Meet The Billionaire Family Building America’s Roofs — And Taking On Elon Musk.”

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