Crossmark Announces Majority Investment by Warburg Pincus

Current management will maintain significant equity position, continue to lead company

Published in CSP Daily News

PLANO, Texas -- Crossmark, a leading sales and marketing services company in the consumer goods industry, said that it has entered into a merger agreement with an affiliate of Warburg Pincus, a leading global private-equity firm focused on growth investing; Warburg Pincus will make a majority investment in Crossmark.

The management owners of Crossmark will maintain a significant equity position and continue to actively lead the company after the transaction closes.

They did not disclose the terms of the transaction.

Crossmark, founded in 1905, has been providing solutions for many major world brands across a wide range of retail channels. The company's expertise in sales, merchandising and in-store marketing spans the grocery, mass, club, drug, dollar, convenience store, consumer electronics and specialty channels. Crossmark's goal is to create value for manufacturers and retailers, from profitable sales growth and improved return on investment (ROI) to in-store brand-equity building and shopper loyalty, it said.

Crossmark CEO John Thompson said the investment will allow Crossmark to achieve its growth objectives faster than it could do on its own.

"The Warburg Pincus partnership will provide growth capital that will allow Crossmark to make acquisitions, expand our service offerings, and further enhance our capabilities to deliver even better service to our clients and customers," Thompson said. "We are pleased to have a partner with a common vision and a track record of backing management with resources, expertise and relationships."

Jim Neary, a managing director at Warburg Pincus, said, "We are excited to partner with a management team and company with proven success in providing innovative solutions for its world-class client base. Crossmark operates in an industry where the demand for outsourced services among manufacturers and retailers continues to increase, along with dynamics favorable to the continued growth of in-store marketing services."

Rob Feuer, a managing director at Warburg Pincus, added, "Building on Crossmark's industry leadership--combined with its diverse network of key retailers, talented workforce and unique approach--we believe the company is well positioned for sustained growth and success.".

Plano, Texas-based Crossmark's expertise encompasses the areas of headquarter sales, retail merchandising, retailer solutions, event marketing, in-store data collection, shopper marketing, retail analytics and retail technology solutions.

Warburg Pincus, New York, has more than $30 billion in assets under management. Its active portfolio of more than 125 companies is highly diversified by stage, sector and geography. Founded in 1966, Warburg Pincus has raised 13 private-equity funds which have invested more than $40 billion in more than 650 companies in more than 30 countries.