NEW BRITAIN, Conn. — Stanley Black & Decker (NYSE: SWK) today announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Excel Industries for $375 million in cash. 

Excel is a leading designer and manufacturer of premium commercial and residential turf-care equipment under the distinct brands of Hustler Turf Equipment (Hustler) and BigDog Mower Co. (BigDog). With over $375 million of revenue forecasted in 2021, Excel serves approximately 1,400 active independent equipment dealer outlets that stock, sell and service Hustler and BigDog products in the United States and Canada. Excel has a strong legacy of innovation and launched the first hydrostatic zero-turn mower in 1964.  The Company is located in Hesston, Kan., and has approximately 600 employees. 

In August, it was reported that Stanley Black & Decker had acquired the remaining 80% stake in holdings of MTD Holdings, which manufacturers Cub Cadet and Troy-Bilt equipment, for $1.6 billion cash. 

Stanley Black & Decker's CEO James M. Loree commented, "This is a strategically important bolt-on acquisition as we build an outdoor products leader. Excel brings a range of premier, commercial grade and prosumer turf-care equipment, an extensive dealer network, a talented team and a loyal customer base." 

Hustler dealers received the following correspondence from Joe Wright, president of Hustler and BigDog Mower Co.

Valued Dealer Partner,

I’m sharing the news with you that today Stanley Black & Decker (SBD) announced a merger agreement with Excel Industries. Together the two companies will be positioned for sustainable success with a full portfolio of electric, gas and handheld tools that help cut, clean, and grow beautiful landscapes and gardens. While we don’t have all the answers today about our future as part of SBD, I can tell you that SBD has the same commitment to supporting its people as Excel Industries. We believe this move will create tremendous opportunity for Excel to build on our legacy, strengthen our position as a leader, and further our innovation in the outdoor industry. This move will further our ability to power the creation of attractive, natural, and sustainable environments and provide customers a full range of electric, gas and handheld tools. We will continue operating as separate companies until the deal is complete, which we anticipate happening by the end of the year. After closing, together we will determine our next steps. We’re confident about this new chapter for our company and our dealers. We are proud of the work you do and your dedication to the Hustler and BigDog brands. Your unwavering dedication is a key factor in our success and we look forward to continuing to work together to achieve even more, including increasing our market share. This is an exciting opportunity ahead of us, but we know you likely have questions about what this means for you. Our team is committed to communicating as frequently and openly as possible but ask for your patience given we are in the pre-close phase. Once the deal is closed, regular communication rhythms will be established to inform Hustler Turf and BigDog dealers. Thank you for your continued support.

Joe Wright | President Hustler and BigDog Mower Co. by Excel Industries

The acquisition will be modestly accretive to Stanley Black & Decker's EPS in year one, and accretive to EPS by approximately $0.15 - $0.20 by year three, excluding charges.  The transaction, which has been approved by a majority of Excel's shareholders, is subject to purchase price adjustment provisions and customary closing conditions, including receipt of required regulatory approvals.  The transaction will be funded with cash on hand and proceeds from borrowings.

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