November 2, 2023

Wind Point Partners Announces Sale Of Critica Infrastructure To Henkel AG & Co. KGaA

Chicago, Ill., November 2, 2023 – Wind Point Partners (“Wind Point”), a Chicago-based private equity firm, announced today it has sold portfolio company Critica Infrastructure (“Critica” or the “Company”) to Henkel AG & Co. KGaA (“Henkel”), a publicly traded German manufacturer of industrial and consumer products. 

Based in Houston, Texas, Critica is a high-performance critical infrastructure solutions company. The Company provides safe, sustainable, tested and proven product solutions for repairing and rehabilitating high-consequence critical infrastructure assets. Critica’s highly engineered products, which are complemented by engineering support and installation training services, are essential for the maintenance and operation of industrial pipework, water and wastewater pipelines, energy assets and civil infrastructure.

Wind Point formed Critica in 2019 through the combination of two family-owned businesses, Clock Spring and Neptune Research, which were specialized suppliers of composite solutions for the permanent repair and rehabilitation of pipelines and piping structures. Subsequent acquisitions under Wind Point ownership included GeoTree Solutions® and Fyfe® North America, South America and Europe, all of which served to expand Critica’s product portfolio into fiber-reinforced polymers and geopolymer spray linings, as well as to further diversify the Company into municipal water, wastewater and civil infrastructure markets. 

In 2020, Frank Firsching was named CEO of the Company, bringing nearly 30 years of experience as an executive in the Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul (“MRO”) infrastructure industry. Under Wind Point’s ownership and the leadership of Mr. Firsching and Critica management, the Company experienced significant growth and strategic diversification. Historically an energy-focused platform, Critica now serves thousands of customers across municipal water & wastewater, industrial, chemical & refinery, power utility, transportation, energy and building end markets.

Mr. Firsching commented, “I would like to thank Wind Point and our board of directors for their incredible support in transforming Critica Infrastructure over the last four years. It was a true partnership each step of the journey. We are excited to continue the next phase of our growth by joining Henkel, which is a world class organization with tremendous resources, technical expertise, global footprint and customer access. We look forward to partnering with Henkel to build an unmatched solutions portfolio serving the needs of the global MRO market.”

Alex Washington, Managing Director at Wind Point, noted, “Our investment thesis centered on the tremendous demand for better solutions to meet the global challenge of repair and maintenance of aging infrastructure.  It has been a pleasure to partner with Frank, our board and management to execute a transformative value creation plan to capture that opportunity. With its technical leadership, product innovation, and dedicated employees, we believe Critica is well-positioned for the future and wish Henkel much success.” 

Wind Point is an active investor in the chemicals and advanced materials sector, with select prior and current investments including Hasa, Ascensus Specialties, Paragon Films, Novolex and Argotec. 

Representing Critica in the transaction was Kirkland & Ellis LLP as legal advisor. KPMG provided financial due diligence support.