Subject: Green Merger News - The Year in Review - 2019
In this issue:
Year in Review 2019 Report
Trends in Landscape Industry M&A for 2019
The Outlook for 2020 and Beyond
Value Builder Score and PREScore
About The Principium Group
To our clients and friends:

We are pleased to present the annual Year in Review edition of Green Industry M&A News This year, we are presenting an overview and commentarfy in the newsletter and a downloadable PDF report with  details and links to additional information.

2019 was one of the most active years for landscape industry mergers & acquisitions of the past twenty years.  In our report, we track 97 different transactions.  Of course that doesn't include everything either.

At this stage, it looks like 2020 might equal or exceed 2019.

If you are considering selling or buying a lawn or landscape business or would like to discuss your options, we would welcome the opportunity to speak with you.

Ron Edmonds
901-351-1510 (cell)

Download The Year in Review 2019

The complete report The Year in Review 2019 - Landscape Industry M&A, which detailed listings and links for additional information for the 97 transactions we followed in 2019, is available for download now as an 18-page PDF.

Trends in Landscape Services 
Industry M&A for 2019
We saw strong M&A activity across all landscape industry subsectors during 2019.  This has been driven by several factors.
Private equity investment in the industry has remained strong, driven by the good results that many private equity-backed businesses have produced and the continued need for private equity to deploy capital. The year saw several new private equity platforms launched and several successful exit transactions.
Another company with national aspirations, Sperber Landscape Companies, has emerged under the leadership of the well-known former ValleyCrest Chairman & CEO Richard Sperber, with plans to quickly become a national company.
Industry revenue leader BrightView Holdings has continued to make serial acquisitions in line with its guidance as a public company. Yellowstone Landscape Group extended its reach nearly cost-to-coast and ended the year with a new orivate equity owner.
In addition to the strong activity in landscape services. We saw strong activity across other subsectors.
Lawn care, usually strong, had a solid year, with signs of more to come as it is finally receiving attention from the private equity community.
Tree care was very strong, with both Davey Tree and SavATree being among the moist active acquirors.
Interior plant care which has been relatively quiet  produced several transactions in 2019.
Another sector  that has caught the attention of private equity is vegetation management, with a couple of new platforms launched.  We susopect that wilol mark the beginning of a round of consolidatioin.
While we mostly track M&A activity among larger businesses, the activity for smaller ones was up as well. BizBuySell, the internet business for sale market place, reported 159 lawn and landscape businesses sold in 2018, an increase of 47% over 2018.
We continued to see search funds looking for opportunities in the landscape industry in 2019 and at least two completed transactions.

The Outlook for 2020 and Beyond
The demand for M&A transactions in the landscape services industry and related businesses remains strong as we enter 2020. 
We believe this is the case due to the strong performance of many investments within the industry and the general need for investors to deploy investment capital.
BrightView, as a public company, has stated its intention to continue its acquisition program, as has SiteOne in the landscape supply sector. New private equity platform investments are likely to include acquisitions as a part of their growth strategy. Other landscape industry companies are likely to continue to consider acquisitions as a part of their business strategies.
Merger & acquisition activity is inherently cyclical in nature and we do note that we are in a record post-war expansion. In addition, M&A activity has also tended to contract in pe-riods of political uncertainty, although we have seen few signs of that in the current environment.
There will inevitably be a downturn. However, we do not see many signs that a downturn is likely to occur in the near future. In addition, at this point, we expect that when a downturn does occur, it seems likely be relatively minor in nature, at least when compared to the Great Recession of 2008-2009.
Headwinds that affect the industry as a whole can be expected to have some impact, including:
  • Low levels of unemployment.
  • Increases in the minimum wage and general wage levels.
  • Immigration enforcement activities.
  • Erratic administration of the H2B guest worker program.
One interesting and encouraging phenomenon we have observed is that despite the level of industry consolidation activities, we continue to see many new entrants into the market. This regeneration phenomenon over time contributes to the supply of acquisition targets. and the health of the industry.
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Our Travel Schedule

This year, we are planning to attend the following industry events:

Texas Nursery/Landscape Expo - August 13 -15 - San Antonio
GIE+Expo 2020 & Landscapes 2020 - October 21-23 - Louisville
Tree Care Industry Expo - October 29-31 - Baltimore

If you'll be at any of these events, we'd be glad to meet with you.
The Principium Group provides merger & acquisition and advisory services.  We provide sell-side, buy-side, exit planning, valuation and consulting services to business owners in the green industry along with business buyers and investors investors

Whether you have immediate plans to buy or sell a business or may sometime in the future as part of an exit planning strategy, we would welcome the opportunity to speak with you about your business.
The Principium Group

P.O. Box 414
Cordova, TN 38088
Ron Edmonds

Chris Martin
888-229-5740, ext 103


The information included in this newsletter is derived from publicly available sources. Our intent is to give a perspective on the industry taken as a whole. The inclusion of a transaction in this newsletter does not imply that The Principium Group acted as an advisor to either of the parties to the transaction. It is the policy of The Principium Group always to maintain the confidentiality of its client relationships. For those transactions in which The Principium Group did play a role, the information included herein is still limited to that available through public sources.
Principium Group, PO BOX 414, 38088, Cordova, United States
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