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SSG Advises Unicon Acquisition in Sale of Substantially All Assets to Private Equity Buyer

June 16, 2023, 07:40 AM
Filed Under: Logistics

SSG Capital Advisors acted as the investment banker to Unicon Acquisition, Inc. in the sale of substantially all of its assets to a private equity buyer. The transaction was effectuated through a sale of the senior secured debt and a subsequent transaction pursuant to Article 9 of the Uniform Commercial Code. The transaction closed in June 2023.

Established in 1998 and headquartered in Marshville, North Carolina, Unicon is the country’s largest logistics services provider to the live poultry industry. The Company offers harvesting, hauling, pest control, litter treatment, composting, and plant labor services to poultry processors located in the Southeast, Mid-Atlantic, and Midwest regions. The Company utilizes automated and manual harvesting crews to deliver best-in-class service, reduce labor needs, and increase animal welfare and safety.

After successfully navigating the live poultry logistics industry as a manual harvester for 17 years, the Company made the strategic decision in 2015 to invest in automating the harvesting process to combat a challenging labor market. That decision proved successful as the Company experienced significant growth following the implementation of the first automated harvester in 2016. However, the strategy also proved to be capital intensive, and as a result, the Company sought a strategic or financial investor to strengthen its capital base and provide adequate liquidity to further support its growth initiatives.

SSG was retained by Unicon to assist in the exploration of strategic alternatives. SSG conducted a comprehensive marketing process and attracted interest from multiple parties who engaged in a thorough review of the business. A private equity buyer ultimately prevailed in the process and purchased the assets through a UCC Article 9 sale, which was completed in an expedited timeframe and allowed the Company to maintain engagement with its customer base. SSG’s ability to manage complex transactions and identify buyers in niche market segments enabled the Company to maximize the value of the assets for the stakeholders and preserve hundreds of jobs for the employees.

Other professionals who worked on the transaction include:

  • Tyler P. Brown of Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP, counsel to Unicon Acquisition, Inc.; and
  • Mark T. Plichta and Kyndle Bennett of Foley & Lardner LLP, counsel for the private equity buyer.

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