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Tech Air expands national footprint with acquisitions

August 20, 2018

Tech Air is not backing away from its growth-by-acquisition strategy; in fact, the Danbury-based gas distributor recently announced it has acquired three more companies. It has now acquired 26 companies under its current ownership.

Tech Air said last week it has acquired Speed Industrial Supply of Kemah, Texas. Speed is a distributor of industrial and welding supplies serving the Galveston Bay area near Houston. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Speed distributes supplies to large industrial welding and maintenance companies serving the heavy industrial sector, such as oil rigs and refineries. Tech Air officials said the acquisition gives the company “a base from which to launch a new regional operation in the Houston area.”

The move further expands Tech Air’s geographic footprint in the U.S. Earlier this year, Tech Air completed the acquisition of Leeper Brothers in California and Colorado Distributing in Colorado.

“Speed has a well-established reputation and strategic value in the attractive Galveston-Houston area and we look forward to building on this acquisition in the region,” Myles Dempsey, Jr., CEO of Tech Air, said. “Colorado Distributing builds upon our growth strategy in that state and strengthens our service offerings. The acquisition of Leeper Brothers greatly enhances our position in southern California, and we are excited to have added medical gas business to our business mix.”

Tech Air acquired Leeper Brothers in February. Based in North Hollywood and founded in 1978, Leeper Brothers is a distributor of medical gases and sells various gases used by dentists and oral surgeons. The move was Tech Air’s fifth acquisition in California.

In April, Tech Air acquired Denver-based Colorado Distributing, a hardgoods business with primarily power and utilities customers.

Tech Air distributes industrial, medical and specialty gases, and related equipment. It has a retail component to its business - primarily welding supplies -- at is Danbury headquarters on Mill Plain Road. It was founded in 1935 and operates more than 45 branch and fill locations throughout the U.S.

Tech Air is owned by CI Capital Partners and Tech Air management. CI Capital is a private equity firm that has invested in middle-market companies since 1993. It has made more than 290 acquisitions representing more than $9 billion.

“Through 26 add-on acquisitions, Tech Air has transformed a regional company to one with significant operations coast-to-coast,” Joost Thesseling, managing director at CI Capital, said. “We remain committed to supporting the company and its acquisition strategy.”

The writer may be reached at cbosak@hearstmediact.com; 203-731-3338

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