MORSCO acquires Fortiline Waterworks

Oct. 31, 2016
Company expands footprint in the Sunbelt region of the U.S., adding to recent acquisitions in North Carolina and Georgia.

FORT WORTH, TEXAS, OCTOBER 31, 2016 -- MORSCO, Inc., a Fort Worth-based distributor of commercial and residential plumbing products, heating and cooling equipment (HVAC), and pipe, valves and fittings (PVF), has acquired Fortiline Waterworks, a portfolio company of CHS Capital LLC and one of the largest waterworks distributors in the United States, as its waterworks distribution platform.

MORSCO, a portfolio company of global private equity firm Advent International (“Advent”), is a leading U.S. distributor of commercial and residential plumbing and HVAC supplies. MORSCO is one of the fastest growing companies in its industry with 140+ branch locations, more than $1 billion in sales and over 2,000 associates in 12 states. Advent made a significant new equity investment to support the acquisition.

Mike Swedick remains President and CEO of Fortiline, which continues to operate as a standalone company, responsible for waterworks supplies distribution inside of MORSCO.

Chip Hornsby, CEO of MORSCO, commented, "One of our biggest goals of 2016 was to continue to expand our footprint in the Sunbelt region of the United States. With recent acquisitions in North Carolina and Georgia along with the Fortiline acquisition, we now have a presence in 17 states. The addition of Fortiline as a standalone waterworks business under the leadership of Mike Swedick further demonstrates our commitment to the waterworks industry and to being a leader in the markets we serve. Fortiline brings a highly experienced leadership team possessing a track record of growth, operational excellence and superior customer service to the MORSCO family."

Fortiline, the third-largest waterworks distributor in the U.S., significantly enhances MORSCO's market position and provides MORSCO’s vendors and customers with greater opportunities. The acquisition further diversifies MORSCO in terms of geographies, end markets and products.

"We are excited to join the MORSCO family and know that our similar cultures and values will allow for a relationship that will enable both companies to continue to thrive and grow," said Mike Swedick, Fortiline President and CEO. "We look forward to continuing to build our waterworks platform while collaborating with the leadership team at MORSCO to build a world-class distribution company. Similar to MORSCO, we plan to strategically grow our presence in our existing markets while looking to enter new markets throughout the Southeast."

MORSCO plans to convert a select number of Morrison Supply Company’s waterworks branches to Fortiline stores to leverage Fortiline’s vendor and customer relationships. MORSCO and Fortiline will work together to expand product lines in existing branches as well as in new locations.

MORSCO is a leading U.S. distributor of commercial and residential plumbing, waterworks and HVAC supplies. The company was founded nearly 100 years ago in Fort Worth, Texas, and is now one of the fastest growing companies in its market. MORSCO is a private company sponsored by Advent International and led by a team of industry veterans. The MORSCO family of operating units consists of Express Pipe & Supply (CA), Farnsworth Wholesale Company (AZ), Morrison Supply Company (TX, OK, NM, LA, KS), Murray Supply Company (NC, SC, VA), Wholesale Specialties (CO), DeVore & Johnson (GA), Fortiline Waterworks (AL, FL, GA, KS, KY, NC, OH, OK, SC, TN, TX, VA) and MORSCO’s premier showroom offering in these markets, Expressions Home Gallery. For additional information regarding MORSCO or any of its brands, please visit the website at

About Fortiline
Fortiline Waterworks, headquartered in Concord, N.C., is one of the largest wholesale distributors of underground water, sewer and storm utility products in the United States. Founded in 1997, Fortiline distributes more than 75,000 SKUs to a diverse base of more than 4,500 contractor, developer and municipal customers through a network of 42 branches in 12 states in the Southeast, Mid-Atlantic and Midwest. The company’s vision is to be the preferred and most trusted resource for utility infrastructure product solutions, and Fortiline backs that with specialty divisions and extensive inventory at locations across the country. To learn more, visit

About Advent International
Founded in 1984, Advent International is one of the largest and most experienced global private equity investors. The firm has invested in more than 315 private equity transactions in 40 countries and as of June 30, 2016, had $40 billion in assets under management. With offices on four continents, Advent has established a globally integrated team of over 190 investment professionals across North America, Europe, Latin America and Asia. The firm focuses on investments in five core sectors, including business and financial services; healthcare; industrial; retail, consumer and leisure; and technology, media and telecom. After more than 30 years dedicated to international investing, Advent remains committed to partnering with management teams to deliver sustained revenue and earnings growth for its portfolio companies. For more information, visit

About CHS Capital
CHS Capital is a Chicago-based private equity firm with over 25 years of experience investing in the middle market. Through partnerships with strong management teams, CHS Capital aims to accelerate earnings growth and drive value creation through human capital initiatives, performance improvement actions and strategic growth activities. Throughout its history, CHS Capital has made investments in over 400 businesses and invested $2.9 billion of capital. For additional information, please visit

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