Turning water pumps into energy savers.
Lakers is a school book example of a buy and build. The pump industry is closely linked to the issues of flooding due to urbanisation and global warming. Lakers was truly committed to solving these environment and water management issues.
They came to us through our industrial network. We got in touch with Carl-Johan Callenholm, who at the time was the CEO of Xylem in the Nordics, the biggest pump manufacturer in the world. He had the idea to roll out the aftermarket in the pump industry, but didn’t get the American headquarters’ approval, as they thought the individual Nordic companies were too small to acquire.
Carl-Johan had a great vision and we contributed with a big dose of realism and strategic plans. We were a great fit. There was almost immediately a great rapport, but it still took some two months of discussions to agree on the road ahead. We needed to bring realism into the project and establish a strong commercial foundation.
Early on, we decided to unite all companies around a strong purpose and culture to keep and attract the right people. And we did it; after a while, we did not need to look for people, they came to us. Our journey was amazing. We acquired and consolidated ten pump service companies in less than 2,5 years, compared to the expected 4-5 years, and we had strengthened the organization and structure. The energy was all-time-high, as well as the results. Of course, there were some minor hick ups along the way too, but you resolve that pretty fast when you share the same values and vision for the company.
In September 2018, we sold Lakers to Summa Equity to continue the journey. Lakers was really about building true value, since these small companies would not have survived if we had not helped them consolidate.