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  1. #1

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    Horizon Hobby sold!

    Dear Valued Partner,
    I am very pleased to announce that our board of directors has signed an Agreement under which Horizon Hobby will be sold to an investor group led by myself. The transaction is expected to close sometime in early January. The investment group includes Armory Capital, LLC, a local, family-owned Champaign company, and Mill City Capital L.P. located in Minneapolis. These two investors have deep experience with management-led acquisitions.
    I’m excited to share this news with you, because it’s all about growth and continuity and a bright future. Both Armory Capital and Mill City Capital are long-term investors who are uniquely aligned with Horizon’s culture, core values and strategy. This transaction will give us a capital structure that will enable us to manage through industry-wide challenges and grow well into the future. The company you have come to know and rely on is not changing. The management team will remain in place through this transaction and there are no planned layoffs with this transaction.
    You can expect that this change will be seamless to you. Our commitment to investing in developing exciting, innovative products that have the potential to grow the hobby has never been greater. I’m especially proud of the fact that our new investors agree with our approach to business and will enable us the best opportunity to stay true to our values and culture.
    We appreciate your business and your continued support very much. Together, we can help even more people have fun with hobbies. We will update you as soon as we have more information to share.
    If you have any questions, please contact your sales rep or any of the sales management team.
    Have a prosperous and enjoyable December.
    Sincerely,
    Joe Ambrose
    CEO of Horizon Hobby Inc
    Motors & Rotors. JetCat, Powerbox, Intairco, Behotec, Graupner. CARF-models Rep. JR Propo for ever!, Jet 1A, MAP, Evojet, BVM

  2. #2

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    Nothing out of the ordinary!
    Seamless to us Dave. LOL

  3. #3

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    Wouldn't say that, but for sure it won't be seen at the end user.

    D
    Motors & Rotors. JetCat, Powerbox, Intairco, Behotec, Graupner. CARF-models Rep. JR Propo for ever!, Jet 1A, MAP, Evojet, BVM

  4. #4
    Chris Smith's Avatar
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    What? The Chinese didn't buy it?

  5. #5
    DiscoWings's Avatar
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    Horizon Hobby is a UK company? Or did the U.K. branch of Horizon Hobby Get Sold?
    \"Hi,You are 100% correct but are also 100% wrong... \"
    - rcflip

  6. #6

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    Not going by what Dave posted!
    Looks 100% American to me!

  7. #7

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    I'm a US dealer for them and I found out today by reading this post. Might explain why some team members and staff left earlier in the year to do other things.
    I use my real name and am not sponsored by anyone but myself

  8. #8
    FalconWings's Avatar
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    Was surprised to see Quique Somenzini leave.......only the best pilot in the world!
    Buying Jet Legend? Read here: http://www.rcuniverse.com/forum/m_11372496/mpage_1/key_/tm.htm

  9. #9
    YellowAircraft's Avatar
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    Hi

    It's the change to the blue shirts. They look like Wal-Mart employees in those shirts. The red ones were LEGIT.
    Yellow Aircraft, JetCat Engines and Turn Key Jets
    yellowaircraftplanesdotcom

  10. #10
    YellowAircraft's Avatar
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    Wait....am I confusing Horizon with JR?
    Yellow Aircraft, JetCat Engines and Turn Key Jets
    yellowaircraftplanesdotcom

  11. #11
    bcovish's Avatar
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    The announcement is posted on Horizon's web site
    Bob-O
    I Crashed All My Planes, Can I Fly Yours

  12. #12
    Zeeb's Avatar
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    Yup with all those folks who've been leaving recently yet seem to be going somewhere else while staying in the hobby industry, this announcement makes more sense of the possible reasons those guys might have left.

    Might have something to do with why there was no further joint marketing strategy between JR and Spektrum????

    Oh well, I don't buy a lot of stuff from Horizon anymore even though I think they are a great company they just don't sell much of what I buy now including radio stuff. I got tired of waiting for an upgrade to my 12X radio and went to the Spektrum stuff when the DX18 came out but it's just too big for my short fingers and developing arthritis, so I went to another radio altogether. I'll keep the 12X until the models on it either find new homes or that great trash can in the sky, but all my new stuff is going to the different system.
    Zeeb

  13. #13
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    This is a sad day. No matter what the marketing hype is a sale to a financial group inevitably leads to being run by bean counters, not product enthusiasts. That means support for discontinued products goes out the door. And just when I busted up a Hangar-9 P-51 PTS and am waiting for some money to fix it.

  14. #14

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    Investment groups generally have customer support on the back burner. That's if they don't fleece the company and bail out.
    Dale

  15. #15
    Zeeb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rgburrill View Post
    This is a sad day. No matter what the marketing hype is a sale to a financial group inevitably leads to being run by bean counters, not product enthusiasts. That means support for discontinued products goes out the door.
    Yes sir that's exactly what I was thinking; the almost legendary Horizon product support is going to go out the window at the insistence of the bean counters for the benefit of the investment group/s. Works for a short while until the customers figure out what they buy isn't going to be supported very well if at all and they go somewhere else. This be about the same as going to Hobbico again, oh wait, I already did that.....
    Zeeb

  16. #16

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    The current CEO is part of the investment group. It might be a coincidence but the head of Armory Capital has the same last name as the Horizon CEO. Not sure how this will all play out but seems like as far as transitions go it should be fairly stable.
    What size tank do you have in that thing?

  17. #17

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    Can you say price increase across the board.These investment companys want instant return on their dollar.They don't care a lick about the hobby world .this is seen as a hit and run.Grab as much money as possible and bleed the company dry and get out.

  18. #18
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    Investment groups are all about churning companies. Build them up and sell them.

  19. #19

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    Not always the case Andy. I sold my company to a capital group they splintered it and sold off parts making money on each section after draining everything they could from it.They then went after competitors to break up their core.

  20. #20
    AndyAndrews's Avatar
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    Yep that is what churning is...at least it can be a result of it.

    Quote Originally Posted by scaleman57 View Post
    Not always the case Andy. I sold my company to a capital group they splintered it and sold off parts making money on each section after draining everything they could from it.They then went after competitors to break up their core.

  21. #21

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    Nevermind
    Last edited by Dblex; 12-10-2013 at 06:28 PM.

  22. #22
    rmh's Avatar
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    There are many and various reasons for the change being made - Likely, none of the customers will see anything which they don't like.
    Libby is still watching you

  23. #23

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    So, what does that mean," being sold to an investor group lead by myself"? Is the current CEO of Horizon buying it.
    CUB BROTHERHOOD # 151, CORSAIR BROTHERHOOD # 80, CLUB SAITO # 804, WACO BROTHER #242, P-47 BROTHER #98, GLOW HEAD #1

  24. #24
    mr_matt's Avatar
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    Yes it is a management led buyout. Not that uncommon. Michael Dell just led one and bought Dell. Hard to guess many details as I assume the whole transaction is private.

    This can be an exit strategy for the founder (to get his/her money out) or to get them out of debt (same thing I guess!)

    Or the management group can't get enough money for its plans from the usual sources (ownership, banks etc) so they go private equity.

    I have no idea which way it will go. They have a strong brand, and that did not come easy, these guys should know that and protect that brand name.
    Matt

  25. #25

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    I get concerned when you are told "things won't change". Sorry, just went through an acquisition and the first thing we were told was "nothing will change".

    All kidding aside, I wish Horizon the best!


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