Fayette County

Big Ass Solutions being acquired by equity firm for $500 million

The “Chief Big Ass” of Big Ass Fans, Carey Smith, with one of several Big Ass Fans in 2012.
The “Chief Big Ass” of Big Ass Fans, Carey Smith, with one of several Big Ass Fans in 2012. Herald-Leader staff file photo

Big Ass Solutions is being acquired by the New York equity firm Lindsay Goldberg, according to the Federal Trade Commission, which approved the deal.

Moody’s estimates that the acquisition is worth $500 million.

Rumors have flown for months in the community and on online job-rating boards about the future of the Lexington company, which makes low-speed, high-volume fans and lighting for industrial and residential use.

The company issued a statement Tuesday morning that said: “Big Ass Solutions, the maker of Big Ass Fans and Big Ass Light, confirms that Founder and Owner Carey Smith is currently in negotiations with outside investors to recapitalize the company to accelerate its growth.

“Because the nature of these ongoing discussions prohibit more detailed communications, the company will have no further comment at this time.”

Company spokesman Scott Sloan said there would be no additional comments from Big Ass Solutions.

Big Ass Fans was founded in 1999. It’s not known how many employees the company has in light of recent layoffs. In 2016, the number was estimated at 800.

Big Ass Fans made $240 million in revenue in 2016.

Lindsay Goldberg focuses on leveraged buyout and growth capital investments for mid-market companies. It has $10 billion in assets.

A receptionist for the company said it doesn’t speak to the press. Big Ass Solutions is not yet listed among its acquisitions. Earlier in October, Lindsay Goldberg acquired Women’s Care Florida, a multi-specialty provider of women’s health services.

Cheryl Truman: 859-231-3202, @CherylTruman