Toromont Industries to acquire Hewitt Equipment for $1.02B

Toromont Industries Ltd. (TSX: TIH) has agreed to acquire the businesses and net operating assets of Hewitt Equipment Limited from Heclan Holdings Limited.

Toromont Industries will pay $917.7 million in cash and issue 2.25 million Toromont shares for a total consideration of $1.0177 billion.

Pointe-Claire, Québec based Hewitt Equipment Limited is the authorized Caterpillar dealer for the province of Québec, Western Labrador and the Maritimes, as well as the Caterpillar lift truck dealer for most of Ontario. Hewitt is also the MaK dealer for Québec, the Maritimes and the Eastern seaboard of the United States, from Maine to Virginia.

Founded in 1952, Hewitt has 45 branches across Eastern Canada and employs more than 2,000 people. In the year ended December 28, 2016, Hewitt generated revenues of over $1.0 billion, operating profit of $66.4 million and net earnings of $46.6 million.

“Acquiring Hewitt marks a very important milestone for Toromont and is beneficial to our customers, employees and shareholders on many levels,” said Scott J. Medhurst, Toromont President and CEO. “The Hewitt family has built a world-class organization throughout much of Eastern Canada over many decades with a strong reputation for quality service among its customers. We are very proud to have the Hewitt Group join us and are privileged to be taking on the stewardship of this excellent business and building on the family legacy. We intend to add to its position of strength by investing in people, facilities, technology and rental fleets. Our position will allow us to better capitalize on organic growth opportunities given the recovery of the mining sector that we are currently experiencing and the promise of significant infrastructure investment. We look forward to working with key members of Hewitt’s leadership team.”

“The acquisition delivers a substantial growth opportunity, allowing us to expand into the significant Québec, Western Labrador and Maritime markets, and strengthens our expertise in the mining, construction, power systems and forestry sectors. We are focused on ensuring a seamless transition for our customers and employees,” added Medhurst.

“For more than 65 years, the Hewitt Group has been at the centre of the resource and construction industries in Quebec and the Maritimes, helping to get roads, dams and mines built and running,” said Jim Hewitt, Chairman and CEO of Hewitt Equipment. “With the trend towards consolidation taking root in each of the sectors in which Hewitt operates, we are confident that our customers and employees will benefit from working within an even larger organization with access to even more resources and capital.”

Upon close of the acquisition, Toromont’s Caterpillar dealership will operate 120 branches in Nunavut, Manitoba, Ontario, Québec, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, Nova Scotia and Newfoundland & Labrador, giving the company one of the largest sales territories in the Caterpillar dealer network. Toromont expects to maintain existing facilities and under its decentralized business model, regional leadership will continue to run their businesses locally – empowered to make decisions in the best interests of their customers.

TD Securities Inc., CIBC Capital Markets and BMO Capital Markets are acting as financial advisors and their respective affiliates have provided committed financing. Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg LLP is acting as legal advisor to Toromont and EY Canada provided due diligence support.

photo credit: Hewitt Equipment