published Friday, June 1st, 2012

Chattanooga's Burner Systems sold

A Chattanooga-based company that's a key player in making components for gas heating and cooking appliances has been sold to a New York private equity firm.

Burner Systems International, which has 175 people at its headquarters and manufacturing operations in Lookout Valley and 1,200 in North America and Europe, was sold to an affiliate of Aterian Investment Partners.

Terms of the deal with seller Dyson Investments weren't disclosed Thursday.

Eric Griesemer, Burner Systems' chief executive, said the sale will strengthen the company's balance sheet and give it better opportunities to invest in growth.

He said business has been "reasonably stable" in North America so far this year.

"Europe is volatile," Griesemer said, adding there are concerns that economic worries on that continent may migrate across the Atlantic Ocean.

He termed the transaction "a very positive event for our customers, vendors and employees."

Christopher H. Thomas, a partner in Aterian, said in a statement that Burner Systems was provided with the necessary capital to accelerate its growth in high-quality, innovative products as well as manufacturing technology.

Aterian works with businesses generating $25 million to $500 million in annual revenues with proven franchises in need of up to $50 million of capital, according to the firm.

Burner Systems is one of the largest global suppliers of components, assemblies and system solutions for gas appliances.

As late as 2007, the company had 435 workers here. It has additional manufacturing facilities in Mexico, France, England, and Turkey, according to the company, and more than 170 customers in 25 countries.

about Mike Pare...

Mike Pare, the deputy Business editor at the Chattanooga Times Free Press, has worked at the paper for 27 years. In addition to editing, Mike also writes Business stories and covers Volkswagen, economic development and manufacturing in Chattanooga and the surrounding area. In the past he also has covered higher education. Mike, a native of Fort Lauderdale, Fla., received a bachelor’s degree in communications from Florida Atlantic University. he worked at the Rome News-Tribune before ...

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