Private equity company Rise Capital bought Raleigh-based SMT, a fabrication company with 155 employees in a deal that closed Friday,, SMT CEO Susan Rothecker said. Terms weren’t disclosed.
“The first time I met [Rise Capital partner] Harry Smith, I could tell he was as excited as I am every day,” said Rothecker, who has led the company since she joined 20 years ago. “It’s a match made in heaven because we complement the other companies in his group.”
SMT opened in 1969 as a small machine shop on Glenwood Avenue in Raleigh. It now has a 200,000-square-foot plant in west Raleigh and specializes in sheet metal fabrication and powder coating.
The sale was sparked by the desire of Rothecker’s older partner, who is in his 70s, to exit the business, she said. She noted there are very few female executives in the metal fabrication industry.
“I’m often the only woman at the table, which doesn’t bother me at all,” she said. “I’m in my 50s and I’m not ready to retire. It’s a lot of fun to grow.”
Smith praised Rothecker as a “rock star CEO.”
Companies controlled by Rise Capital are nearing annual sales of $200 million after the sale earlier this year of its biggest holding, air filter manufacturer Pamlico Air, Smith says. The company’s goal is to make a few acquisitions annually and reach $500 million in revenue, he says.