Sterling Investment Partners, a leading middle market private equity firm, has made a majority equity investment in HeartLand, in partnership with management. HeartLand is a premier provider of commercial landscape and facilities services, currently operating in five markets across the central United States. HeartLand’s founder, Edward Schatz, Jr., backed by a proven and entrepreneurial team of “green industry” executives, chose to partner with Sterling to continue building a scalable platform in the industry. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
Headquartered in Kansas City, HeartLand serves clients through its five regional companies: Signature Landscape in Kansas City (Kansas and Western Missouri); Columbia Landcare (Central Missouri); Keesen Landscape (Denver, Colorado); Hillenmeyer Landscape (Lexington, Kentucky); and JML Landscape (Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania). Services include full-service maintenance (mowing, pruning, fertilization and chemical, irrigation, bed maintenance and annual flowers), landscape enhancements (property upgrades and renovations), and winter services (de-icing and snow removal). Each operating platform is a leader in its respective market, with strong brand reputations for high-quality work, responsiveness, reliability, excellent communication and sustaining long-term client relationships. HeartLand’s leadership team includes Chief Executive Officer Ed Schatz, Chief Development Officer Bill Dellecker, and Chief Financial Officer Peter Welch, who have decades of experience building successful businesses within the commercial landscape industry. By selectively investing in top regional providers, HeartLand has created a diverse platform that combines the power of a pre-eminent local service model with the financial resources, integrated systems, technical and developmental resources of a progressive industry leader.
“We conducted an intensive and focused search to secure a new financial partner who will support our continued growth; that process led us to the ultimate selection of Sterling Investment Partners,” said Schatz, Jr. “While they possess the depth of financial resources we needed, they also bring an understanding of and enthusiasm for this business. Their proven track record and management partnership philosophy has resulted in the growth and development of multiple firms over the years and we are confident they will help HeartLand achieve that same level of success. We’ll make a strong team!”