Circle Graphics acquires Bay Photo

Investment firm H.I.G. Capital announced its portfolio company, Circle Graphics has acquired high-profile professional lab Bay Photo, Inc. Bay Photo, headquartered outside Santa Cruz, Calif., was founded by Larry Abitbol in 1976. The lab has an additional production facility in Springfield, Mo. Terms weren’t disclosed. The deal is an expansion for Circle Graphics beyond its traditional role in wall décor, as Bay Photo is a provider of wall décor, albums, and specialty prints for pro photographers, artists, prosumers, and third-party channel partners.“Bay Photo enhances Circle’s presence in the professional photography and artist markets while expanding Circle’s product portfolio into the rapidly growing segments of metal prints, albums, and photobooks,” commented Andrew Cousin, CEO of Circle Graphics. “The company has had a long and successful history under Larry’s leadership dating back to the 1970s, and we look forward to serving as great stewards of his business going forward.”

“Over the years we have searched for a partner that could leverage what we have built, provide scale and resources to help us exceed our goals, and align with the core values by which we run our business,” says Abitbol. “I am pleased to announce that we have found that partner in Circle Graphics. Together, we will continue to provide our customers with innovative products of the highest quality, along with on-time delivery and superior customer service. We also share the same vision around the future growth of the photo print industry and look forward to continued success together.”

“We are pleased to support Circle’s acquisition of Bay Photo,” said Ryan Kaplan, Managing Director of H.I.G. Capital. “The investment further establishes Circle Graphics as a leader in the online wall décor market and continues our strategy of expanding Circle’s geographic reach and product diversification. We look forward to Circle partnering with Larry to help achieve Bay Photo’s next phase of growth while continuing to offer the same exceptional quality and customer service his customers have experienced over the past 45 years.”

Bay Photo represents the second add-on acquisition Circle Graphics has made since H.I.G. acquired Circle Graphics less than one year ago. Founded in 2000, Circle Graphics produces best-in-class digital graphics for consumers, professionals, and businesses through two distinct divisions: Online Wall Décor and Out-of-Home Visual Solutions. Based near Denver, CO, Circle Graphics employs approximately 600 people in multiple locations.

HIG is a global private equity and alternative assets investment firm with $40 billion of equity capital under management, the company says. Based in Miami, and with offices in New York, Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Atlanta in the United States, as well as international affiliate offices in London, Hamburg, Madrid, Milan, Paris, Bogotá, Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo, HIG specializes in providing both debt and equity capital to small and mid-sized companies. Since its founding in 1993, H.I.G. has invested in and managed more than 300 companies worldwide.