Rhone Agrees to Invest in Connected Fitness Firm Wahoo

Rhone Capital has agreed to make a significant equity investment in cycling and endurance training technology firm Wahoo Fitness, according to a statement Wednesday.

The deal values the company at several hundred million dollars, said a person familiar with the matter who declined to be identified because the terms weren’t disclosed. A representative for Rhone declined to comment.

As part of the deal, Wahoo’s management team, including founder and Chairman Chip Hawkins and Chief Executive Officer Mike Saturnia, will reinvest alongside Rhone while the company’s current private equity investor, Norwest Equity Partners, will continue to own a minority stake.

Fitness technology has become increasingly attractive to investors as the pandemic forced people to exercise at home or outdoors, creating a newfound convenience that may alter habits permanently. Sales of Peloton Interactive Inc. machines have soared along with its share price over the past 12 months while Lululemon Athletica Inc. agreed last year to pay about $500 million for Mirror to capture part of the home fitness market.

“Rhone has a remarkable track record in partnering with founder-led companies to evolve and strengthen their businesses” Hawkins said in the statement. “I believe Rhone will be a great partner as we continue our global expansion, broaden our portfolio, and leverage the power of technology to transform the way people train and reach their fitness goals.”

Atlanta-based Wahoo, founded in 2009, has a range of connected-fitness products, software and training content focused on endurance sports. Norwest backed Wahoo to make acquisitions including the Speedplay pedal company and Sufferfest, now called SUF, training software.

Goldman Sachs Group Inc and Robert W. Baird & Co. advised Wahoo on the transaction. Jones Day served as lead legal adviser and BDO provided transaction advisory services to Wahoo. Bank of America Inc. and Royal Bank of Canada acted as financial advisers to Rhone on the transaction and Kirkland & Ellis acted as legal advisor to Rhone.

Rhone, with offices in London, New York and Madrid, focuses on investments in companies with a transatlantic presence, according to its website.

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