Private investment firm Highlander Partners acquires Florida-based Custom Window Systems, sees 'huge opportunity' to capitalize on rebounding housing market

DALLAS , December 11, 2012 (press release) – Highlander Partners, L.P., a Dallas-based private investment firm, today announced the acquisition of Custom Window Systems, Inc. dba Custom Windows & Doors ("CWS" or the "Company"). Founded in 1986, CWS is a leading designer, manufacturer, and marketer of impact-resistant and non-impact windows and doors, as well as porch enclosure products, primarily serving Florida and other coastal markets in the Southeastern United States. CWS offers the most complete vinyl impact-resistant product line in the southeast.

CWS will continue to operate under its existing name and operating structure. Greg Schorr, a Senior Advisor for Highlander, will join CWS as the President and Chief Executive Officer. Mr. Schorr was formerly the President and COO of the parent company of Simonton Windows. John Cwik, the Company's founder, President and CEO, will continue to work with CWS in a consulting and advisory role. In 2006, Mr. Cwik successfully refocused the business on impact-resistant vinyl windows and doors and relocated to a new 250,000 square foot facility in Ocala, where it currently employs approximately 290 people.

Mr. Schorr commented, "I think this is the perfect time to reenter the window and door industry and I am glad to do it in partnership with Highlander. We see a huge opportunity to capitalize on a rebounding housing market with one of the nation's leading independent designers and manufacturers of windows and doors."

Jeff L. Hull, Highlander's Managing Partner and the new Chairman of CWS, stated, "We are very excited about the opportunity to draw on our collective backgrounds in the window and door industry and leverage our expertise in working with CWS. John and his team did a great job of managing the business through the downturn, and John's forward-looking decision to refocus his operations from aluminum to vinyl windows and doors in 2006 positions the company to capitalize on a long-term market transition to vinyl, which has been driven by energy code changes." Mr. Hull is the former Chairman, President, and Chief Executive Officer of Atrium Companies Inc., one of the largest window and door manufacturers in the United States. Hull added, "We see a rebounding housing market and believe additional acquisition opportunities exist that could further a national window company strategy."

Raymond James served as the exclusive financial advisor to CWS in connection with this transaction. Regions Bank provided senior financing facilities in the transaction.

About Highlander Partners

Highlander Partners, L.P. is a Dallas-based private investment firm with partners that have committed over $400 million of principal funds for direct private equity investments in North America. The firm focuses on making investments in middle market businesses in targeted industries in which the principals of the firm have significant operating and investing experience, including healthcare, basic manufacturing, food, building materials and others. Highlander Partners uses a "buy and build" investment approach, creating value by helping companies grow organically and through acquisitions. For more information about Highlander Partners, please visit www.highlander-partners.com.

About Custom Window Systems, Inc.

Custom Window Systems, Inc. is the leading designer and manufacturer of windows, doors, and porch enclosure products in the southeastern United States. From its central Florida location, the Company offers the most complete line of impact-resistant vinyl windows and doors in the industry. It primarily serves the repair and remodeling markets in Florida and other coastal regions that maintain strict building codes due to exposure to high winds, tropical storms, and hurricanes. In addition, CWS offers a full range of aluminum impact-resistant windows and doors, aluminum and vinyl non-impact windows and doors, and porch enclosure products. For more information about CWS, please visit www.cws.cc.

If you would like more information about this transaction, please contact Jeff L. Hull at 214-245-5000.

SOURCE Highlander Partners, L.P.


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