Published On: Sat, Aug 8th, 2020

MiddleGround Capital acquires majority stake in Dura Automotive Systems

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MiddleGround Capital, a US private equity firm, has acquired a majority stake in Michigan-based automotive supplier Dura Automotive Systems from Bardin Hill Investment Partners for an undisclosed price.

Charlton Group will remain as a minority shareholder in Dura Automotive Systems which designs and manufactures engineered automotive systems. The automotive supplier is said to operate via its mechatronics, lightweight structures, and exterior trim segments, for manufacturing shift-by-wire actuators, electric vehicle (BEV) battery trays, advanced driver-assistance systems (ADAS), aluminum roof rails, and mechatronic control systems among other products.

The company is claimed to supply its products to major automotive OEMs and Tier one partners across the world, with a presence on over 300 platforms covering all light vehicle and powertrain types.

John Stewart – MiddleGround Capital partner John Stewart said: “We have been searching for an opportunity to invest in a business as well-positioned as Dura to capitalize on the most disruptive trends in the automotive industry.

“From today’s focus on electrification of the powertrain and vehicle lightweighting to some of the longer-term shifts toward autonomous driving and connected car, Dura is and will continue to be a driving force in an industry undergoing major transformation. We are delighted to support Dura on its journey.”

Headquartered in Auburn Hills, Dura Automotive Systems has a workforce of around 6,700 employees across 31 facilities in 13 countries. The investment in the company marks MiddleGround Capital’s sixth platform acquisition made from its first fund, which closed last year.

Dura Automotive Systems filed for bankruptcy in October 2019, which is the second time for the company since 2006. In late 2009, the automotive supplier was acquired by Lynn Tilton through her private equity firm Patriarch Partners.

The automotive supplier has now emerged from a global restructuring program and has named Kimberly Rodriguez as its new CEO.

Chris Charlton – Dura Automotive Systems equity partner and Founder of The Charlton Group said: “Having completed a challenging restructuring process during a global pandemic, Dura has emerged under new ownership, well capitalized and eager to resume an active role in value creation.

“We want to thank our customers, suppliers and employees for their unwavering support as we begin our next chapter as a new company.”

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