CNC Machining Company Elite Tooling of Kalamazoo, MI, Acquired by FabX Industries

Calder Capital is excited to announce that Kalamazoo, MI-based Elite Tooling, LLC has been acquired by FabX Industries, the parent company of Aquest Machining and LaserTec, machining and fabrication services companies based in Greenville, Michigan.

With its intentionally low-volume, flawless high-precision, and fast turnaround strategy, Elite Tooling has become a steadfast partner of some of the most recognized pharmaceutical, medical, and aerospace manufacturing giants in the greater Kalamazoo, MI area.

Shane Smith founded Elite Tooling, LLC in 1996, at the age of 18. Over the years, Mr. Smith has handpicked and assembled an excellent team that thrives on fielding technically challenging projects with short deadlines. FabX Industries takes a simple approach: making manufacturing easy for its customers by partnering with clientele and taking care of their employees. The complementary visions between the two companies have made the acquisition a natural fit.

Mr. Smith, who plans to remain with the business long-term as the President of Elite, was pleased with the transition, stating, “Finding the right buyer for Elite and closing the deal took about a year, and it was a relief that the process could continue even in the midst of COVID.  I was seeking a growth partner and I am confident that the leadership of Gopi Ganta and Bob Playford of FabX will take Elite to the next tier of success and performance. The Calder Capital team was professional, dedicated, and down-to-earth. I look forward to seeing how Elite Tooling will grow under the direction of FabX Industries.”

Left to right: Bob Playford, Shane Smith, Gopi Ganta

Gopi Ganta, the owner of FabX Industries, commented, “I had been looking for an established 5-axis CNC acquisition for some time. When I met Shane and toured the facility, I knew I had come across an excellent fit. Shane cares deeply about his team and customers, and that is reflected in the immaculate condition that he keeps his facility. I have rarely seen such attention to detail and pride in ownership. I look forward to a long-term and prosperous relationship with Shane Smith. With this acquisition, FabX Industries will be able to expand its reach into high precision machining and also make Kalamazoo a strategic location to service our customers in Northern Indiana.”

Calder Capital Mergers & Acquisitions Advisor overseeing the transaction, Scott Nicholson, said about the sale, “I really enjoyed working with Shane and Gopi. Shane wears his heart on his sleeve. It was clear from the beginning that Shane wanted to partner with a buyer that could help the company grow while at the same time participating in that growth and ensuring that his team and customers were taken care of. It’s a difficult balancing act to find a buyer that is a good fit at a fair price and a fair deal structure. I am confident that we did all of those things in this transaction that together the buyer and seller will be better off.”

Max Friar, Managing Director at Calder Capital, noted that “Elite Tooling is an example of the fact that whether it’s ‘a good time to sell’ depends mainly on the seller and buyer. Mr. Smith’s dedication to his company for over two decades brought it to the successful establishment it is today, and FabX Industries has the strategic resources bring it to a whole new level. A fit like this isn’t always easy to find, but it’s what Calder Capital strives to accomplish with every transaction.

Calder Capital represented Elite Tooling, LLC as its exclusive Mergers and Acquisitions Advisory firm.


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