- Leading Manufacturer of Electromechanical Switches to be Acquired by Littelfuse, Inc.
- C&K Poised for Future Growth Following Strategic Acquisitions, Operational Improvements
Sun Capital Partners, Inc. (“Sun Capital”), a leading private investment firm focused on defensible businesses in growing markets with tangible performance improvement opportunities, today announced that an affiliate has signed a definitive agreement to sell C&K (or “the Company”), a manufacturer of high-quality electromechanical switches, to Littelfuse, Inc. (NASDAQ: LFUS), an industrial technology manufacturing company empowering a sustainable, connected, and safer world, for a total enterprise value of $540 million. Sun Capital was advised by its European affiliate, Sun European Partners, LLP, in connection with this transaction.
Founded in 1928, C&K has been at the forefront of technological evolution in electromechanical switches. The Company is a leading global provider of critical, highly-engineered electromechanical switches and interface technology solutions for essential applications in industrial, transportation, aerospace, and datacom products, and other industries. The Company is headquartered in Waltham, Massachusetts, with operations in France, Germany, India, Vietnam, and China.
“We were very pleased to collaborate with C&K’s management team to accelerate growth across the organization, implement key operational improvements and position the business for future success,” said Marc Leder, Co-Chief Executive Officer of Sun Capital. “We were also able to draw on our strong sector expertise to help C&K management capitalize on M&A opportunities and establish a culture of continuous improvement that will serve the Company well as it moves forward in partnership with Littelfuse.”
Since its acquisition by an affiliate of Sun Capital in September 2017, C&K nearly doubled EBITDA and improved EBITDA margins by over 400 basis points, demonstrating the impact of Sun Capital’s value creation and operational initiatives. Together with Sun Capital, C&K created a more agile sales function, developed new products by investing in new machinery, pursued strategic M&A, and added highly qualified senior management, including a new CEO, Lars Brickenkamp, who brought 25 years of relevant industry experience to the Company.
C&K successfully completed two strategic add-on acquisitions during Sun Capital’s ownership. In 2018, C&K acquired Vuillermoz, a micro-mechanical components and tooling company, which helped eliminate a tool shop bottleneck the Company had been experiencing. In 2021, C&K acquired EIS Electronics, a producer of cable and connector assemblies, increasing C&K’s exposure to the high value aerospace and defense sector.
“Under Sun Capital’s stewardship we have achieved remarkable success and are proud that C&K is now a clear industry leader in the design and manufacturing of micro-miniature tactile switches,” said Brickenkamp. “Their operational and industry expertise, paired with our unerring dedication to complete customer satisfaction, enabled us to accelerate C&K’s growth. We are confident that C&K will continue to enjoy success under the ownership of Littelfuse.”