White River Capital, Inc. (NYSE MKT: RVR) (“White River”) and Parthenon Capital Partners, a Boston and San Francisco based private equity firm (“Parthenon”), today announced the signing of a definitive merger agreement pursuant to which an affiliate of Parthenon will acquire White River and its wholly-owned subsidiary Coastal Credit, L.L.C. (“Coastal Credit”) in a merger transaction between the Parthenon affiliate and White River. Under the terms of the merger agreement an affiliate of Parthenon, in which Parthenon’s partner, OP Trust, is an investor, will acquire all of the outstanding shares of White River common stock in an all-cash transaction for an aggregate deal value of approximately $79.5 million or $21.93 for each share of White River common stock, subject to certain adjustments as more fully described in the definitive merger agreement.
White River’s Chairman and CEO, John M. Eggemeyer, stated, “Bill McKnight has done an incredible job building Coastal Credit into one of the leading sub-prime auto finance companies today. We are pleased that we have been able to enter into an agreement that is good for our shareholders while at the same time being positive for our employees and customers.” Bill McKnight, CEO of Coastal Credit, also stated, “We are very excited to be partnering with Parthenon, a firm with an outstanding reputation, valuable industry insight and capital that will enhance our ability to grow the business."
Brian P. Golson, Managing Partner at Parthenon said, “After 10 years of effort in the industry and an intense 3 year search for the right partnership in the sub-prime auto finance sector, we’re thrilled to partner with Bill McKnight and the Coastal Credit executive team to aggressively grow the company. Coastal is poised to build upon its leadership position in the auto finance marketplace.” Andrew Dodson, Partner at Parthenon, also remarked, “We are impressed with the team at Coastal Credit and their remarkable 25 year track record of excellence. We look forward to assisting the company as it continues to build its franchise nationally.”