La Caisse, BMO Capital Partners invest USD 20 million in Novacap's Nautilus Plus

By Nicel Jane Avellana

Nov 18, 2013 09:21 PM EST

Quebec-based fitness center chain Nautilus Plus received a USD 20 million from La Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec and BMO Capital Partners. La Caisse, which had USD 185.9 billion in assets as of June this year, manages funds for pension and insurance plans. BMO Capital Partners provides junior capital to mid-market Canadian companies. It currently has USD 400 million in committed capital. Nautilus Plus is a portfolio company of Novacap, a Canadian private equity firm with USD 790 million assets under management.

The investment was equally made by La Caisse and BMO Capital Partners. It will give both firms ownership of a block of shares of Nautilus Plus while enabling the fitness chain to grow its network.

La Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec Private Equity Executive Vice President Normand Provost said about the investment, "This financing enables us to support a well-established Québec company that has become a leader in its industry. With its expansion of recent years, Nautilus Plus has increased its market share and offers our depositors attractive long-term returns."

Nautilus Plus Chairman and Novacap Industries General Partners Domenic Mancini said Nautilus Plus considers the funding a vital investment since the company is in the process of developing and implementing its plan for expansion.  Nautilus Plus President and Chief Executive officer Richard Blais said he is also excited about growing the company with the backing of their new partners.

Novacap Industries President Jacques Foisy added, "Novacap, BMO and la Caisse have been working together for more than 30 years and are the ideal partners for companies with strong potential. Like us, BMO Capital Partners and la Caisse assist Québec companies with their long-term expansion plans."

Founded 35 years ago, Nautilus Plus now has 67,000 members. It has 39 fitness centers located mostly in Montreal and Quebec City. It also has branches in the Outaouais region. Its workforce of 1,200 people includes 500 personal trainers and nutritionists.

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