Consolidated Water Co. Ltd., a leading developer and operator of advanced water supply and treatment plants, has exercised its option to purchase, through its wholly-owned subsidiary, Consolidated Water U.S. Holdings, the remaining 49% interest in its subsidiary, Aerex Industries, for $8.5 million. As a result of the transaction, on January 24, 2020, Consolidated Water became the 100% owner of Aerex.
Based in Ft. Pierce, Florida, Aerex is a custom and specialty manufacturer of water treatment-related systems and products. It also provides design, engineering, management, operating and other services applicable to commercial, municipal and industrial water production.
Under the terms of the original purchase agreement for Aerex, Consolidated Water acquired an option to compel Aerex's minority shareholder, Thomas Donnick, to sell his 49% ownership interest to Consolidated Water. Consolidated Water also granted the minority shareholder an option to compel Consolidated Water to purchase his 49% ownership interest. The terms called for the purchase price to be set at a fair market value for Aerex at the time the options would be exercised. The respective options became exercisable in February 2019.
Following Consolidated Water's recent exercise of its option and the close of the transaction, Donnick stepped down as President of Aerex, but he will continue to serve in a consulting capacity. Jason Carlson has been promoted from Vice President to President of Aerex. Jamie Bryan, who was appointed last year as Consolidated Water's Vice President of manufacturing, will continue to oversee the expansion of Aerex's operations.
"Tom has been an excellent business partner since we invested in Aerex nearly four years ago, and we're glad we can continue to benefit from his vast industry experience as a consultant to the company," commented Consolidated Water CEO, Rick McTaggart. "Jason has been an outstanding member of Aerex's team for more than 11 years, and we are confident he will continue to excel in his new position as President."
"Since our initial acquisition of 51% of Aerex in February 2016, we have strengthened Aerex's capabilities and resources and expanded its product offerings, which has resulted in improving results," added McTaggart. "Given our expectations for this business, we deemed this an opportune time for us to exercise our call option for the remaining ownership. We expect this to contribute to increasing shareholder value in the coming years."
Aerex generated income from operations of approximately $2.0 million on revenue of approximately $10.5 million for the nine months ended September 30, 2019. In comparison, Aerex incurred a loss from operations of $(147,906) on revenue of approximately $7.3 million for the full year ended December 31, 2018.