Bain Capital to Buy Maker of Craftsman Tools for $1.6B

It will mark Bain's largest transaction so far this year

By Christopher Freeburn, InvestorPlace Writer

Private equity firm Bain Capital announced that it will pay $1.6 billion to acquite Apex Tool Group from Danaher (NYSE:DHR) and Cooper Industries (NYSE:CBE). The deal is expected to be finished next year, Bloomberg noted.

Danaher and Cooper Industries created Apex in 2010 by merging their tool units. Each owns a 50% stake in Apex, which manufactures Craftsman-branded tools sold by retailers including Sears.

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The Apex acquisition marks Bain’s biggest transaction so far in 2012. Last year, the firm was involved in transactions valued at $4.7 billion.

Bidding for Apex, which generated sales of $1.46 billion and turned a profit of $134 million last year, had been in progress since at least last month. Earlier reports said Bain was willing to pay between $1.5 billion and $1.8 billion to purchase the business.

Bain Capital was founded and once run by former Massachussetts Governor and current Republican Presidential candidate Mitt Romney.

Shares of Cooper Industries fell more than 1% in Wednesday afternoon trading, while Danaher shares were mostly flat.

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