Update posted Tuesday, July 3 at 10:27 a.m.:
A spokesperson for Aurora Casket Company says the acquisition will have no effect on employment or operations at Aurora.
“If anything, the capital Aurora now has available via the acquisition will help stimulate its growth, as noted in the release,” said Beth Parker with The Eisen Agency, the public relations firm hired by Aurora Casket.
Original story posted Monday, July 2 at 5:02 p.m.:
(Aurora, Ind.) - Months of rumors have been answered with the announcement that Aurora Casket Company has been sold to a New York company.
The casket manufacturer revealed Monday it has been acquired by affiliates of Kohlberg & Company, LLC, a leading private equity firm based in Mount Kisco, N.Y.
Aurora Casket is one of North America's leading suppliers for caskets, urns, stationery, memorial products, and technology solutions for funeral homes. Founded in 1890, Aurora Casket has been a privately owned through five generations by the Backman and Barrott families.
“The Barrott and Backman families looked at this transaction as an opportunity to continue the legacy and leadership of Aurora Casket,” said Bill Backman III. “We are excited to partner with Kohlberg, a firm that shares our commitment to funeral service and to our purpose of helping to create an honorable closure to every life.”
According to a news release, the merger is expected to accelerate Aurora Casket’s growth both organically and through acquisition, backed by the strength of Kohlberg’s private equity funds.
"We are excited to partner with an organization with the rich history and solid foundation of Aurora," said Christopher W. Anderson, a partner of Kohlberg. "The company’s success across five generations is a testament to the Backman and Barrott families. We believe that Aurora is poised for continued growth as the leading partner to funeral professionals."
It is unclear how the sale will impact employment at Aurora Casket's five manufacturing facilities in the United States and Canada, including it's namesake location in Aurora, Indiana.
A dollar figure concerning the acquisition was not mentioned in the news release.