US private equity fund manager Ares Management Corporation has acquired a controlling interest in Chicago area lifting and heavy transport company Atlas Crane Service.
Atlas’ management team, led by chief executive Zach Prentis, will continue to run the company, stepping up its focus on growth and geographic expansion, which has included a growing wind power related business. No details of the transaction have been released. Just before the transaction was announced Steve Filipov was appointed as an Atlas main board director.
Based in Aurora, Illinois on the western edge of the Chicago metropolitan area, Atlas was established in 2009 and also operates out of locations in Wheeling and Ottawa Illinois with around 150 operating engineers employed. It runs a fleet of around 80 cranes, including truck cranes, All Terrains to 750 tonnes, Rough Terrains up to 100 tonnes and an extensive crawler crane fleet topped by the company flagship, a 1,000 tonne Liebherr LR11000.
Ares was set up as an independent fund management and investment business in 2002 and has grown rapidly since then, partly through acquisitions of other private equity and fund management operations. Registered in Delaware, it operates out of offices in Los Angles and New York.
Speaking of the acquisition Prentis said: “The investment by Ares marks an exciting next chapter for Atlas, our employees and our customers as we seek to accelerate the growth of our business and capabilities. Ares brings meaningful resources and deep experience in the renewables industry, which we believe will support our strategic expansion in the growing wind sector. Our team is energised by the future opportunities for Atlas, and we remain steadfast in our commitment to supporting renewable energy generation across the U.S.”
Keith Derman, Partner and Co-Head of Ares Infrastructure Opportunities division, added: “We are excited to support Atlas’ long term vision and leverage our combined strengths as we seek to drive continued growth of renewable energy power generation. Zach and his team have built a differentiated business with a strong, entrepreneurial culture, and we look forward to helping them provide critical services and solutions to wind asset owners and operators throughout the country.”
Steve Porto a partner in Ares Infrastructure Opportunities said: “Ares and Atlas share a commitment to accelerating the transition to a low carbon economy, which requires high quality and competitively priced servicing of wind energy assets. We believe that Ares’ deep renewables experience will provide Atlas with strong support to capitalise on the significant opportunity in this resilient and growing asset class.”