Briggs & Stratton names new CEO after sale to KPS

Replaces Todd Teske

Last updated on September 24th, 2020 at 12:58 pm

Briggs & Stratton LLC has named Steve Andrews as its new president and chief executive officer following its sale to an affiliate of KPS Capital Partners.

Todd Teske
Todd Teske

A Missouri bankruptcy judge approved the sale last week and the deal closed Monday. The sale allows New York-based KPS to acquire nearly all of the assets of Wauwatosa-based Briggs & Stratton Corp. free and clear of substantially all liens, claims, encumbrances and interests for $550 million. Unsecured creditors were expected to receive 7 to 10 cents on the dollar in recovery.

“I am honored to lead Briggs & Stratton,” Andrews said. “Free of any legacy liabilities, and with a strong balance sheet and the company’s world-class workforce, we have an exception opportunity to build upon the company’s leading market position.”

Andrews replaces Todd Teske, the former chairman, president and CEO of Briggs. A Briggs spokesman said Teske would remain with Briggs & Stratton Corp., the legacy company, until the bankruptcy process is complete. In a statement, Andrews thanked Teske, “for his decades of service and many contributions” to the company.

Andrews added that he is pleased to work with KPS again. He first worked with the New York-based private equity firm as CEO of International Equipment Solutions, a manufacturer of attachment tools, operator cabs and complex fabrications for off-highway applications.

KPS created IES in 2011 with the acquisition of Paladin and Crenlo from Dover Corp. The transaction generated $290 million in proceeds for Dover. After making additional acquisitions in 2012 and 2015, KPS exited the investment in 2019. Two business units were sold to Stanley Black & Decker for $690 million in cash and other businesses were sold to NPK Construction Equipment and Angeles Equity Partners.

“Steve is an outstanding leader with a demonstrated track record of transforming and growing companies,” said Michael Psaros, co-founder and co-managing partner of KPS. “We have worked successfully with Steve in the past and look forward to collaborating again as the new Briggs & Stratton.”

Psaros said Briggs is starting a new era under KPS.

“The company has a new owner, a new CEO, a new board of directors and a renewed focus. Briggs & Stratton launches with a portfolio of industry-leading products sold under iconic brand names, a rock solid capital structure and access to KPS’ financial resources and expertise,” Psaros said. “We look forward to accelerating the company’s growth by increasing its already substantial investment in research and development, technology and new product development. KPS will also provide the capital for Briggs & Stratton to pursue strategic acquisitions.”

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Arthur Thomas
Arthur covers manufacturing for BizTimes. He previously was managing editor at The Waukesha Freeman. He is a graduate of Carroll University and did graduate coursework at Marquette. A native of southeastern Wisconsin, he is also a nationally certified gymnastics judge and enjoys golf on the weekends.

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