Watts Water Technologies, Inc. – through its subsidiaries, a global manufacturer and provider of plumbing, heating and water quality products and solutions – announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Bradley Corp. for $303 million, subject to customary adjustments. The net transaction value is approximately $268 million after adjusting for the estimated net present value of expected tax benefits of approximately $35 million. The transaction will be funded through cash on hand and the remainder from Watts’ existing revolving credit facility. The transaction is subject to customary closing conditions and necessary regulatory approvals and is expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2023.
Bradley is a trusted provider and manufacturer of commercial washroom and emergency safety products serving commercial (primarily institutional) and industrial end markets for over 100 years. The company offers a comprehensive product portfolio that includes plumbing fixtures, washroom accessories and emergency safety products to a diverse customer base. Bradley has annual net sales of approximately $200 million.
Chief Executive Officer Robert J. Pagano Jr. commented, “Today’s strategic acquisition delivers on our mission to improve comfort, safety and quality of life for people around the world. Bradley’s complementary portfolio will enable us to provide our customers with innovative water solutions, as it adds front-of-the-wall applications to our differentiated back-of-the-wall portfolio. We believe we can leverage the combined strengths of the two companies’ sales networks and channel relationships to facilitate cross selling and accelerate growth. With expanded end market access, increased product diversification, a strengthened go-to-market position and our highly experienced leadership team, Watts is well positioned to capture run-rate cost synergies, capitalize on growth opportunities and drive value creation.”
Compelling acquisition expected to yield meaningful strategic and financial benefits
- Extends product portfolio and market leadership: Bradley’s innovative front-of-the-wall portfolio includes a full suite of high-quality, specified and code-driven products;
- Increases end market exposure to secular growth themes: Strategically expands Watts’ position in commercial (primarily institutional) and industrial markets. This is expected to accelerate growth as these markets continue to benefit from long-term secular trends such as water conservation, safety and regulation and energy efficiency;
- Leverages the One Watts Performance System and connected strategy: Achieves meaningful cost synergies through commercial and operational initiatives in addition to global sourcing savings;
- Enhances competitive positioning: Combines two leading brand portfolios with proven, longstanding track records of delivering high-quality, innovative products and solutions;
- Brings highly experienced management team and skilled workforce: Adds strong leadership with deep industry expertise, including Bryan Mullett, Bradley’s chairman and CEO, who will join Watts as president of Bradley, a new platform within Watts’ Americas region; and
- Accretive transaction providing long-term financial benefits: The transaction is expected to be modestly accretive to Adjusted EPS in 2024 due to incremental interest expense and normal purchase accounting adjustments. The transaction value, net of the estimated tax benefit, represents less than 8.0x forecasted 2023 proforma Adjusted EBITDA after factoring in expected run-rate cost synergies. Adjusted EBITDA margins expected to be accretive by 2027.
Bryan Mullett said, “We are very pleased to have Bradley join Watts and see tremendous opportunity for incremental value creation. This will help us capture the benefits from our diverse range of innovative and customized front-of-the-wall solutions and Watts’ global reach, broad product portfolio and operational strength. I am looking forward to joining the management team to drive continued growth and support the integration of these two companies that have a combined 250-year heritage of experience and endurance in sustainable water products and solutions.”
Pagano concluded, “Watts and Bradley complement each other well in terms of culture and shared vision, with proven track records of delivering innovative, high-quality products and solutions along with outstanding customer service. We look forward to welcoming the Bradley team to Watts Water Technologies.”
Additional information regarding the transaction will be discussed during Watts' third-quarter earnings call in early November 2023.