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Stirling Square Capital Partners announces sale of Global Design Technologies LLC for $343m

May 2007

Stirling Square Capital Partners [“Stirling Square”] the pan-European private equity firm, today announces that it has signed an agreement to sell Global Design Technologies LLC [“GDT” or “the Company”] to Bridgepoint for $343m. GDT is the leading international manufacturer of swaged permanent coupling systems for rigid tubing and pipes used in the aerospace, defence and power markets, operating from sites in France (at Les Clayessous- Bois, south west of Paris) and the US (Gardena, near Los Angeles).

GDT was created through the simultaneous management buyouts of Permaswage of France and Deutsch Metal Components of the US, by Stirling Square in January 2005 at a total enterprise value of $125m. Consolidation of the two businesses has created a global industry leader.

As a complex international investment, GDT is highly representative of SSCP’s strategy. The group aims to target companies that offer potential for operational improvement and build growth and profitability through international expansion and cross border merger activity.

Under Stirling Square’s ownership, GDT has enjoyed strong and consistent sales growth and operating profit performance, a reflection of the diversification of revenue stream created by consolidation and rapid market share growth. The company has also benefited from significant capital investment and as a result revenues have increased from approximately $61m year ended 2003 to approximately $93m in 2006 and the number of employees from 437 in 2005 to over 630 today.

GDT holds a market leading position in the global permanent couplings systems market. Whilst aerospace has been the company’s main sector, it has also been successful in developing new systems for different applications, becoming the first and only company to have developed swaged fittings for US power substations.

Martin Calderbank, who coordinated the investment and exit on behalf of Stirling Square Capital Partners, said: “This has been a very successful investment for us. We have worked with a top quality management team to implement a long-term growth strategy, while driving operational improvements yielding cash flow and profit generation. This deal is a classic example of our work, a complex, cross border transaction; successfully integrating businesses to create an industry leader. We wish the team continued success under new ownership.”

Angelo Farro, CEO of GDT, said: “With Stirling Square’s active support, GDT’s management team has been able to create a more diverse, industry leading business. The professional experience of the Stirling Square partners together with financial backing has enabled us to improve perfomance and given us a foundation to grow. We have greatly valued their support and advice.”

Ahmad Diba will take over from Angelo Farro as CEO of GDT upon completion.

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Advisers to Stirling Square Capital Partners

Financial: Lazard, Steen Associates
Legal: Ashurst, Kirkland and Ellis

Notes to Editors:

For further information contact:

Financial Dynamics (for Stirling Square Capital Partners) – (44) 20 7269 7256
Fergus Wheeler / Emily Weston / Lucy Kelly

Global Design Technologies LLC – (1) 310 217 3121
Angelo Farro

Stirling Square Capital Partners

Stirling Square Capital Partners is one of Europe’s leading mid-market private equity investors. SSCP seeks to invest in ‘mid-market’ firms characterised by proven business models, market leadership, high cross-border development potential and talented management teams.

SSCP targets European transactions between 50-500 million from a wide spectrum of industries and specialises in complex, cross border deals. Since inception in September 2002, the Fund has led ten leveraged acquisitions. The partners at SSCP collectively bring over 80 years of private equity experience.

Global Design Technologies LLC

Global Design Technologies is the leading international manufacturer of swaged permanent coupling systems for rigid tubing and pipes used in the aerospace, defence and power markets. GDT applies its swaging technology through proprietary patented tooling and fittings. These swaged systems are used on all aircraft pipe systems, predominantly those for transporting hydraulic fluid, fuel, oxygen and pneumatic air.

GDT has manufacturing locations in the US and in France. It manufactures most products in-house, sourcing metal raw materials on the open market. The company currently employs over 630 people.