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Ridgemont Equity Partners Acquires Majority Interest in Unite Private Networks

December 14, 2010

Ridgemont Equity Partners, a middle market buyout and growth equity firm, today announced the closing of a majority investment in Unite Private Networks (UPN), a leading provider of high-bandwidth, fiber-based communications networks.  The financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

UPN specializes in providing high-capacity data communications networks and related services to schools, government, carriers, data centers and enterprise business customers. UPN currently provides service in 12 states, primarily in the Midwest U.S.

“Our partnership with Ridgemont as a majority equity sponsor provides growth capital and additional strategic resources to UPN,” said Kevin Anderson, CEO of UPN.  ”Our management team is pleased to be working with Ridgemont and feels confident that our combined experience in the fiber networks business will be very valuable as UPN continues to expand and serve new markets.”

Ridgemont is a private equity firm that was formed in August 2010 and specializes in middle market buyout and growth equity investments.  The principals of Ridgemont have invested over $3 billion in more than 140 companies over the last 2 decades.

“UPN is a prototypical buyout transaction for Ridgemont as an independent firm,” said George Morgan, Partner at Ridgemont.  “Telecom remains a core focus for Ridgemont going forward, as we have made a number of successful investments in the sector dating back to the 1990s. UPN is a promising investment because the company has consistent and profitable earnings, long-term customer relationships, and a dedicated employee base. We are excited about UPN’s growth potential and believe that – coupled with the solid management team at UPN – Ridgemont will prove to be a value-added partner.”

The transaction was initially announced in August, pending approval of federal and state regulators.  Senior debt financing was arranged by the Royal Bank of Canada and included CoBank and Webster Bank.  RBC Daniels acted as financial advisor and Husch Blackwell Sanders LLP acted as legal adviser to UPN.  Alston & Bird LLP acted as legal advisor to Ridgemont.


About Unite Private Networks

UPN specializes in providing high-capacity data communications networks and related services to schools, government, carriers, data centers and enterprise business customers. UPN currently provides service in 12 states, primarily in the Midwest U.S.

About Ridgemont Equity Partners

Ridgemont Equity Partners is a Charlotte-based middle market buyout and growth equity investor. Since 1993, the principals of Ridgemont have invested approximately $4.4 billion. The firm focuses on equity investments up to $250 million in industries in which it has deep expertise, including business and industrial services, energy, healthcare, and technology and telecommunications.