Guardian Capital Partners invests in RIO Brands

Guardian Capital Partners ("GCP") announced that it has invested in RIO Brands LLC (the "Company" or "RIO Brands") on Aug. 5, 2011. Warren, Ira and Mark Cohen sold a 60% stake of the Company and are retaining 40% to partner with GCP and continue as the Company's executive team.

Headquartered in Conshohocken, Pa., RIO Brands ( is a supplier of a full line of outdoor furniture and other related accessories used for the beach, backyard, patio, parks and other outdoor venues. The Company carries a heritage as the oldest continually operating company in the outdoor furniture industry and has patented products as well as recognized trademark and licensed brand names, selling through the retail and e-commerce channels.

Warren Cohen, CEO and president of RIO Brands, said, "We are very pleased to have established a partnership with GCP. Together we bring more firepower to the table that will result in more innovation and opportunities for expansion of the business. This is a positive step to push our Company for future growth to an even greater extent than ever before, and we believe it is good for the industry as well."

Scott Evans, managing partner of GCP added, "RIO Brands is an exciting and accomplished Company, and has successfully established itself as the market leader in beach chairs, umbrellas and other accessories. It has also successfully broadened into other outdoor markets and applications through product innovation and extension. We are excited to be partnering with Warren, Ira and Mark, and look forward to helping the Company capitalize on its next wave of growth."

The law firm Drinker Biddle & Reath, LLP advised Guardian Capital Partners. PNC Business Credit provided senior debt financing for the transaction and Centerfield Capital Partners and Bowside Capital provided additional financing and minority equity.

For more information about the transaction, contact Scott Evans at Guardian Capital Partners at 610.964.1500 or

Guardian Capital Partners ( is a private equity firm based in suburban Philadelphia that makes control investments in lower middle-market manufacturing, consumer products and service companies. GCP partners with management teams to provide equity capital to lead leveraged buyouts, recapitalizations and divestitures of family-owned businesses and non-core divisions of larger corporations.

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