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Hills Machinery Company Announces New Partnership With Prophet Equity II LP

Fri November 08, 2019 - Southeast Edition
CEG


Jim (L), president, and Adam Hills, executive vice president, both of Hills Machinery Company.
Jim (L), president, and Adam Hills, executive vice president, both of Hills Machinery Company.
Jim (L), president, and Adam Hills, executive vice president, both of Hills Machinery Company. Headquartered in Columbia, S.C., with seven locations that serve North and South Carolina, Hills is one of the largest CASE Construction dealerships in the United States Since 2007, when Adam and Jim Hills started the company, the business has experienced a dramatic growth that has seen the company expand fivefold during the past 12 years.

Hills Machinery Company LLC announced Nov. 8 that it has partnered with Prophet Equity II LP to make an equity investment to acquire an interest in Hills Machinery.

Headquartered in Columbia, S.C., with seven locations that serve North and South Carolina, Hills is one of the largest Case Construction dealerships in the United States, with a focus on heavy equipment offered by Case Construction, Terex Trucks, a full line of recycling products, and other leading construction equipment manufacturers.

Since 2007, when Adam and Jim Hills started the company, the business has experienced a dramatic growth that has seen the company expand fivefold during the past 12 years.

"We have gone from being a smaller family-owned business to a much larger business," said Jim Hills, president of Hills Machinery. "We pride ourselves in providing our customers with an ease of doing business backed up with an industry leading level of service. We truly value the relationship with our customers and take pride in becoming a true partner to help them with all of their equipment needs. In order to maintain our ability to grow and service our customers' needs, we developed a strategic plan for the company a few years ago. It became apparent that the best way to propel the company into the future was to ultimately seek out a strategic financial partner to collaborate with Hills Machinery. When we first met the Prophet Equity team, there was an immediate cultural fit and a common vision on how to take care of customers, how to take care of employees and how to grow our business. Adam Hills, executive vice president, and I will maintain our shares and positions in Hills Machinery and Prophet Equity will partner with us to establish a more robust enterprise to make sure the company continues long into the future. The partnership will also expand our financial resources, allowing us to continue to support our organic growth in our current branches plus help to facilitate strategic expansion opportunities. I could not be more pleased for our customers, our dedicated employees, our manufacturers and our shareholders to have the opportunity to partner with Prophet Equity, and I am excited to get started."

Charles Collie, managing director at Prophet Equity, said, "We are honored to have the opportunity to partner with Jim, Adam and the Hills Machinery talented employee base to support its strategic growth initiatives. Through its reputation for top customer service and its strategic relationships with Case Construction, Terex Trucks, Edge Innovate, Rubblemaster, Eagle Crushers, Mauldin, Ecoverse and the other leading construction equipment manufacturers they represent, there are tremendous opportunities for Hills. We expect the company to continue its excellent trajectory of organic growth through geographic expansion and through acquisitions to strengthen Hills' market share even more in the Southern region."

"Prophet Equity has deep experience investing in heavy equipment and equipment rental businesses," said Ross Gatlin, Prophet Equity's CEO and managing partner. "We have a strong track record of identifying and investing in companies like Hills that have unique strategic strength and significant growth opportunities. We look forward to being a strategic, operational and financial partner to the entire Hills team."

About Hills Machinery Company LLC

Founded in 2007, Hills Machinery Company is a heavy equipment specialist serving a broad range of construction and recycling end-markets with an extremely flexible mix of parts, service, rentals and sales. Hills has seven locations that serve North and South Carolina as well as parts of Georgia, Tennessee and Virginia with excellent OEM partnerships that include Case Construction, Terex Trucks, Edge Innovate, Rubblemaster, Eagle Crushers, Mauldin and Ecoverse.

About Prophet Equity LP

Prophet Equity is a private equity firm that makes control investments in strategically viable, asset-intensive, underperforming companies. Over more than 20 years, our Principals have invested in and managed entities with over $6 billion in revenue. Prophet Equity's control equity investments focus on lower middle market companies with strategically strong businesses and significant value creation potential, such as those found in partnerships, corporate carve-outs, divestitures and non-strategic businesses of larger companies. Representative business situations have included special situations, succession planning, recapitalizations, acquisitions, and buy and build strategies. Partnering with owners and management teams, Prophet Equity's team of experts utilize a Holistic Value Creation ("HVC") strategy that is Fortune 500 tested and private equity proven to diagnose and drive dramatic value creation. Portfolio company management teams are highly motivated with clear, uncapped incentives based on realized business performance.