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Belt Power eyes growth under new owners

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Belt Power L.L.C. is looking to grow, and it should get that opportunity now that private equity firm Shorehill Capital L.L.C. has moved into the picture.

An affiliate of Shorehill has acquired a majority interest in Atlanta-headquartered Belt Power, a full service distributor and fabricator of conveyor system components, including conveyor belts, equipment, accessories and rubber hose and gasket products. It focuses heavily on the lightweight conveyor belt end of the business.

Belt Power's two top officials—President and CEO John Shelton and Executive Vice President Travis Wilson—again are major investors in the business and teamed with Shorehill to buy the company from GenCap America, another equity firm.

GenCap, Shelton and Wilson had owned the company since 2007, when they bought it from founder and former CEO Tim Webster.

The announcement was made when the deal closed during the NIBA—the Belting Association convention, held Sept. 24-27 in Seattle.

It's a great opportunity for Belt Power to grow, Shelton, said. “It provides us with more support.

“We were impressed with Shorehill Capital's knowledge of the distribution industry as well as their ability to grow businesses strategically. The resources and acumen they bring to Belt Power will help us take our company to the next level.”

He said the firm's management team and work force will remain unchanged, until at least the company experiences organic growth or with add-ons. At that point, the work force likely will grow.

Belt Power's facility in Atlanta—along with those it operates in Charlotte, N.C., and Houston—and its sales offices in North Carolina, south Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi and Texas will continue to operate as they have.

Chicago-based Shorehill is looking forward to working with Shelton and Wilson “on numerous growth initiatives,” according to Rob Hogan, managing director of the equity fund.

Those initiatives, he said, “include strategic acquisitions, Greenfield expansion and incremental product and service offerings.”

He said Shorehill continues “to look for successful companies in the distribution and industrial markets where we can apply our active investment management approach to partnership with outstanding management teams to accelerate earnings growth and value creation.”

Belt Power was established in 1989 and serves the conveyor maintenance, replacement and overhaul needs of nearly 1,000 current customers with a particular focus on the food service industry.

In 2003, it merged with Charlotte Rubber & Gasket to become a leading supplier of conveyor components in the Southwest. It added the Houston plant in 2010.

Shorehill's principals have more than 25 years of experience investing in middle market industrial and distribution companies.