Belden Sells Grass Valley To Private Equity Firm


MIAMI — A technology supplier of advanced broadcast and media solutions is being acquired by a South Florida-based private equity firm from Belden Inc. in a transaction that sees Cowen and Company as an advisor and Greenberg Traurig as legal counsel.

For an undisclosed price, Louis Hernandez Jr.’s Black Dragon is acquiring Grass Valley.

Black Dragon calls the Grass Valley buy a “control investment,” mirroring other deals involving “growth companies it believes can become market leaders in industries disrupted by digitization.”

In Hernandez’s view, Black Dragon has “significant experience in media technology.” As such, it plans to “accelerate Grass Valley’s evolution to being the market leader in digital media and open and inclusive cloud technology.”

Hernandez says, “Grass Valley has an iconic brand, track record of strong performance, superb clients and products that compete in the top tier in every category they’re in. We are excited and honored to work with Grass Valley’s leadership team, partners and resellers to take the company to the next level with a cloud-enabled, software-based business model, and cement its role as the standard bearer for the future of digital media.”

Hernandez adds that the combination of “a broad product suite, a great team and the direction of the market will make Grass Valley the partner of choice as the digitization of the space accelerates.

Belden will remain a close, long-term collaborative partner, Hernandez also notes.

Grass Valley President Tim Shoulders and his senior team will continue to lead the company. However, Hernandez will become Executive Chairman and, along with selected Black Dragon colleagues, will work with Grass Valley leaders on strategy, execution, client relations and the accelerated expansion to a cloud-based subscription model.

Belden President/CEO John Stroup said, “We are very pleased to partner with Black Dragon Capital. Their deep media-related expertise, proven track record and relationships in the broadcast community make them the perfect partner to drive Grass Valley to the next level. We are excited to be part of the partnership.”

The Black Dragon principals and advisors involved in the Grass Valley acquisition include Hernandez; Mohamed Abuagla, former EVP and CTO of Al Jazeera and Advisor; Dr. Andreas Bereczky, former SVP and CTO of ZDF Germany and Advisor; Peter Neothen, CEO of Quest Media GMBH and Advisor; Gary Bettan, CEO of Broadfield Distributing Inc. and Advisor; Sandy Nassari, Founder and CEO of Melrose Inc. and Advisor; Shengli Han, Vice Chairman of Beijing Jetsen Technology and Advisor; Frank Capria, media product specialist; and Mo Hussein, media finance professional. Several other executives who worked at Avid with Hernandez were involved in the company assessment and strategy. The Black Dragon transaction team was led by Tim Greenfield, Partner, and Dan Consigli, Partner and CFO.