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Red Wing-based Capital Safety Bought for $1.12B

New York-based Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Company has agreed to buy the company for $1.12 billion from Capital Safety's London-based owner, Arle Capital Partners.

Capital Safety, Inc., a Red Wing-based manufacturer of safety equipment, announced Monday that it will be acquired by New York-based private equity firm Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Company (KKR) for $1.12 billion.

KKR will buy the company from Arle Capital Partners, a London-based private equity firm that has owned Capital Safety since mid-2007. The deal is expected to close in January 2012.

Capital Safety makes body harnesses, lifelines, hoists, and other equipment to protect workers from falls at industrial and residential sites. Its products are used in the oil and gas, construction, transportation, and utilities industries.

Capital Safety said that over the past four-and-a-half years, it has doubled its revenues by developing new products through "aggressive research and development" and by expanding to new markets.

"Strong interest in our company is confirmation of our strategic direction and testament to the most experienced team of fall protection experts in the world," Capital Safety CEO Anders Pettersson said in a statement. He added that KKR's intent is to continue to expand Capital Safety, both in terms of products and markets served.

In a separate news release, KKR said that it sees attractive prospects in the fall protection business because of rising social and regulatory focus on worker safety, and that Capital Safety is well positioned to capture the growth in the industry.

Capital Safety has 11 facilities in the United States, Canada, Europe, Asia, and Australia, according to its Web site.

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