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(George Doyle/Getty Images)
(George Doyle/Getty Images)

TorQuest puts money on merchandiser Add to ...

After an almost-silent six months, TorQuest Partners has picked up its first new acquisition of 2012.

The Canadian private equity fund manager announced Monday that it had purchased Array Marketing Group, a company that makes retail merchandising display cases and stands, many of them for big-name cosmetic companies.

While two smaller businesses were absorbed in January and May by Associated Brands – the North American manufacturer and supplier of private-label packaged foods of which TorQuest is a majority owner – this is the firm’s first major deal of the year.

To complete the purchase TorQuest, which has an excess of $850-million of equity capital under management, partnered with Northleaf Capital Partners and Westerkirk Capital. Westerkirk, for one, counts among its investment partners Cosmetica Laboratories Inc., a Toronto-based cosmetics manufacturing company (from product formulation to packaging) for some of the world's top cosmetic brands sold in stores such as Sephora, where Array has put products on view.

Array, also based in Toronto, has created point-of-purchase displays and other retail fixture services as part of its retail merchandising business for more than 30 years. Along with a second location in Toronto, Array has offices in New York City, and Shenzhen, China.

Tom Hendren, president and chief executive officer of Array, will continue to run the company. No deal value has been announced for the acquisition.

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