The nation’s largest specialty pool supply retailer just got
Leslie’s Poolmartrecently acquired
Solutions by Self Chem, a retail firm with six stores in Austin and
another in nearby Temple, Texas. The deal was finalized Sept. 12.
Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
Solutions by Self Chem had been a presence in the area since 1986,
and was led by founders Victor and Martin Yin.
“[The company] matched our profile in terms of its culture,
store size and network,” said Steven Ortega, executive vice
president and CFO of Phoenix-based Leslie’s. “It was a
high-integrity company, and we gave a lot of thought to that in
terms of our long-term integration,” he added. “So it
was a great fit. We’re very excited about it.”
The deal for Solutions by Self Chem comes two months after
Leslie’s was put up for sale — at an asking price of
more than $1 billion — by its private equity sponsor, Leonard
Green & Partners.
In August, however, another private equity firm, CVC Capital
Partners, purchased an undisclosed number of minority shares in
Leslie’s, signaling confidence in the retailer’s
strategy and growth plan, company officials said.
Indeed, the firm continues to grow organically, building 20 to 30
new stores each year. And sales and gross profits have increased
annually over the past decade.
With the acquisition, Leslie’s now counts 15 stores in Austin
and Temple, an area that’s well-positioned for future growth. In fact, Forbes last year ranked Austin as the nation’s best big city for jobs.
The city also has added residents faster than almost anywhere else
in the nation over the past 18 months. And a number of high-tech
companies, including Dell, IBM, 3M, Hewlett-Packard, Cisco Systems
and Apple, either have headquarters or significant operations in
“It’s probably still known as a good area,” said
Steve Johnson, co-owner of All City Pool and Spas in Round Rock, a
suburb of Austin. “It’s an educated area —
there’s still some money around here. So it’s something
that likely makes [Leslie’s] portfolio look
Texas itself is one of the retailer’s largest and
longest-standing markets. In 2009, Leslie’s operated 112
stores in the Lone Star State, according to company officials.
Overall, it runs 652 retail outlets in 35 states.