A private equity firm in New York will purchase a majority share of Glenview, Ill.-based Illinois Tool Works’ decorative surfaces division and plans to establish it as a freestanding business, the company announced Thursday. The firm, Clayton, Dubilier & Rice (CD&R), will invest $395 million in the new company to be set up under ITW’s leading surfaces brand, Wilsonart International Holdings, a maker of high-pressure laminates and other surfacing materials. ITW, which will retain an ownership stake in the new arrangement, reported $1.1 billion in revenues last year for its surfaces division, comprising the Wilsonart, Resopal, Polyrey, and Arborite brands.
ITW opted to take on the new owners rather than run an auction, The Wall Street Journalreports. This is the third time in the last two years that CD&R has bought a majority share of an industrial multinational’s business segment but kept the parent company as the lesser partner, according to the Journal.