Washington DC, July 3, 2003 – Global private equity firm The Carlyle Group, today announced the sale of Baker & Taylor Corporation, an international media wholesaler, to entities affiliated with Willis Stein & Partners, L.P. for $255 million.
The Carlyle Group acquired Baker & Taylor Books, Baker & Taylor Video and Soft Kat businesses from W.R. Grace & Co. in March 1992. During Carlyle's ownership, Baker & Taylor has grown revenues by approximately 50% and operating cash flows by approximately 300% through a combination of intrinsic growth, acquisitions and superior execution.
Carlyle Managing Director, Philip Dolan said, "The management team at Baker & Taylor, led by Gary Rautenstrauch, its C.E.O., has done an outstanding job in recognizing the changing dynamics within the media wholesaling industry and identifying the opportunities for the Company to excel and thrive in a period of significant change. Carlyle greatly appreciates our strong collaborative relationship with the Company's management and wishes them continued success in coming years."
Baker & Taylor CEO, Gary Rautenstrauch said, "Carlyle has been a great partner of Baker and Taylor over these past years, helping to position the Company strategically within its markets and achieve its growth and profitability objectives."
Baker & Taylor is a leading full-line distributor of books, videos and music products to libraries and both traditional and Internet retailers. They maintain one of the largest combined in-stock book, video and music inventories in the United States with approximately 600,000 titles in inventory and over 1.5 million available for order.