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  • Writer's pictureAndre Watson

Blue Bell's BrightView Holdings lands $500M investment, names new CEO

Dale Asplund spent over 25 years at United Rentals Inc.

Blue Bell's BrightView Holdings Inc. has named a new CEO and landed a $500 million investment from a private equity firm to help pay down debt.

The nation's largest commercial landscaper appointed United Rentals COO Dale Asplund as chief executive, effective Oct. 1. The hiring of Asplund comes following the May departure of CEO Andrew Master, who led the company's initial public offering in 2018. Jim Abrahamson has the held the role on an interim basis. Asplund spent more than 25 years at United Rentals.

In a statement, Asplund, 55, said he plans to personally invest $5 million in buying shares of Brightview Holdings, "underscoring [his] confidence in the company’s future."

The $500 million investment from comes from an affiliate of New York's One Rock Capital Partners LLC in the form of newly issued shares of convertible stock in a move to strengthen the company's balance sheet. Brightview says that 90% of the funding, or $450 million, will go toward paying down $1.4 billion in debt to "position it for transformative growth under Asplund’s new leadership." The stock is convertible into Brightview shares at a price of $9.44.

BrightView shares were up nearly 9% in mid-day trading on Monday to $8.85 a piece. Shares of BrightView are up 25% year-to-date.

“We believe this investment from One Rock is a strong vote of confidence in BrightView’s strategy and continued efforts to increase growth and profitability,” BrightView Chairman Paul Raether said in a statement.

One Rock Capital Partners focuses on control-stake equity investments in mid-market companies. It is a strategic partner of the Mitsubishi Corp.

Two partners at One Rock will join Brightview's board with the investment, operating partner Kurtis Barker and partner Joshua Goldman. Brightview's majority shareholder is KKR Brightview Aggregator L.P., which approved the transaction and agreed to waive certain rights, including the right to appoint more than two members of the board, BrightView said in a statement.

BrightView reported a year-over-year third quarter revenue increase of 2.5% to $766 million. Profit rose 55.6% to $16.8 million. Fiscal year-to-date the company has totaled losses of $24.1 million through three quarters.

Masterman was the company's CEO for over six years. In 2022, he was the No. 20 highest-paid CEO of a public company in the region, pulling in a salary of $10.45 million.

Brightview provides its services for iconic properties across the country, including the National Mall in Washington, D.C., the Bellagio in Las Vegas, the Don CeSar in St.

Petersburg, Florida, and MLB's Field of Dreams Park in Iowa. Locally, the company maintains the landscaping for the Independence National Historical Park.

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