ESOP transaction preserves Thea Enterprises legacy

2021-11-05 22:00:00 - CLIFTON, NJ - (PR Distribution™)

CLIFTON, NJ –Thea Enterprises (Thea) has announced that it has become 100% employee owned by way of an employee stock ownership plan (ESOP). Founded in 1930, Thea is one of North America's leading value-added manufacturer’s representatives serving the lighting, lighting controls, wire, cable and electrical supplies markets. Lazear Capital Securities facilitated the ESOP transaction that has preserved three generations of family leadership and management. As a proud multigenerational family business, Thea helps connect world-class manufacturers with a diverse range of electrical wholesalers including architects, engineers, contractors, and other key specifiers for almost a century.


When third generation owners and cousins, Mark and Doug Thea, began to consider the next chapter of Thea Enterprises' future, one thing remained clear: they knew they wanted to stay active in leading the day-to-day activities with their sales teams, customers, and manufacturers. With over 40 years of managing the business, the cousins still actively engage in closing projects and customer conversions. The process of building upon and preserving the legacy that their family has built over the decades is paramount to Mark and Doug. 


Thea Enterprises General Counsel and Chief Operating Officer, John K. Bradley, has been a valued advisor to Thea since 1994 and has been in his current joint role since 2012. He observed that Thea's decision to convert into an ESOP was multi-faceted, saying, "Deciding to do an ESOP transaction was an emotional, financial and strategic decision for our Company. Lazear was totally hands on during the process and not only put together a structure that will move us towards a fourth generation of ownership and leadership but also was instrumental in getting the deal done."


Wiss Partner, Jim Duffy, serves as Thea’s account and business growth advisor. Jim commented that, “The Thea family has always cared so deeply for its employees. It was wonderful to see them choose to sell their third-generation business to those same employees. Todd Goldman and Lazear Capital Securities were true partners who provided invaluable advice throughout this process. We are all looking forward to seeing the Company thrive as a 100% employee-owned business.”


Peapack-Gladstone Bank assisted with the transaction. Peapack-Gladstone Senior Managing Director, Ron Anderson, commented on Thea’s ESOP transaction saying, “All of us at Peapack-Gladstone Bank are thrilled we played a role in this important transaction for the Thea family and their employees.  We greatly value the trust they placed in us.”


As Thea Enterprises refocuses its operations around employee ownership, there is a bright future in the Company for owner-leadership. Lazear Capital Securities is pleased to have assisted with this transaction and congratulates Doug, Mark, and the entire Thea Enterprises team on their successful ESOP transaction.


Important Disclosures


This press release shall not constitute an offer to sell or a solicitation of an offer to buy, nor shall there be any sale of these securities in any state or jurisdiction in which such offer, solicitation or sale would be unlawful prior to registration or qualification under the securities laws of any such state or jurisdiction.


About Thea Enterprises: 


Founded in 1930, Thea is one of North America's leading value-added manufacturer’s representative serving the lighting, lighting controls, wire, cable and electrical supplies markets. Located within 8 miles of Manhattan and equipped with over 300,000 square feet of warehouse space as well as a portfolio of converting and logistics services, Thea is an essential partner in the commercial, industrial, high-end residential, and distribution markets.


About Lazear Capital Securities


Lazear Capital Securities is a leading middle-market investment bank specializing in ESOPs, mergers and acquisitions, capital formation, and turnaround advisory services. The firm is differentiated by the partners' extensive legal, accounting, financing and deal structuring background with some of the nation's largest companies.


About ESOP Benefits


In addition to diversifying owner assets, taking care of employees and growing the company, an ESOP can:

  • Clear the path for a business transition that includes significant tax advantages for the selling owners as well as the company
  • Create the possibility for the owners to sell the business without forgoing operational control
  • Motivate, recruit and retain employees. Studies have demonstrated that ESOP companies outperform their non-ESOP counterparts. A recent study demonstrated that employee-owned companies are 235% better at job retention than their non-ESOP counterparts (Source: NCEO)
  • Provide a no-cost, qualified, defined contribution retirement plan for the employees
  • Give the employees time to prepare for their new role as shared owners
  • Allow the company to preserve its legacy
  • Encourage the company to stay geographically rooted in one location


If you're considering a sale or other ownership transition, we would be happy to review your situation and share our thoughts on how to maximize value.

Media Contacts:

Full Name
Danielle Turkovich
Lazear Capital Securities
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