Arcapita acquires leading US signage company for over $100 million

Atif A. Abdulmalik, Arcapita’s chief executive officer
Updated 13 January 2018

Arcapita acquires leading US signage company for over $100 million

Arcapita, a global investment firm, has announced that it had acquired a controlling interest in MC Sign Company for a total transaction value in excess of $100 million.
MC Sign is a leading nationwide provider of signage and lighting services in the US.
Atif A. Abdulmalik, Arcapita’s chief executive officer, commented: “We are excited to complete a US private equity transaction and pleased to partner with the management team at MC Sign to help grow the company’s suite of services and customer base.”
He added: “MC Sign is led by a very experienced team of professionals who have grown the business considerably over the past few years, and we believe the company is well positioned to acquire market share in a highly fragmented industry that is dominated by locally focused, sub-scale service providers.”
Abdulmalik said: “Over 75 percent of MC Sign’s customers are blue chip companies with national presence and, attesting to the company’s value proposition, MC Sign has averaged an industry-leading customer retention rate of 99 percent since 2012.”
Martin Tan, Arcapita’s chief investment officer, said: “MC Sign acts as a comprehensive one-stop-shop for customers, eliminating the need to manage multiple relationships with local vendors across diverse geographies. This is especially beneficial for companies with a national or regional footprint.”
Tan said: “We believe the company has significant potential to grow organically and through acquiring smaller regional service providers. Given the repeat nature of customer demand, MC Signs also benefits from a sizeable and growing recurring revenue base. We are excited to bring this opportunity to our investors and are optimistic about the company’s growth prospects.”
Founded in 1953, MC Sign provides signage and lighting services to customers across the US through a highly scalable, vendor-managed, and asset-light business model.
MC Sign has more than 275 customers, many of whom have been with the company for over a decade. 

KAUST honors 243 students at graduation ceremony

Updated 17 December 2018

KAUST honors 243 students at graduation ceremony

King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) awarded 243 master’s degree and Ph.D. candidates with their diplomas during its ninth commencement ceremony on the KAUST campus on Friday. 

The ceremony was presided over by members of the KAUST Board of Trustees, including Board Chairman Khalid A. Al-Falih, minister of energy, industry and mineral resources and chairman of Saudi Aramco, and attended by senior KAUST leadership and faculty members. 

Commencement 2018 highlights included the official inauguration of KAUST’s third president, Dr. Tony Chan, and conferral of the university’s first honorary doctoral degree to Ali Ibrahim Al-Naimi, former chairman of the KAUST board of trustees, former minister of petroleum and mineral resources and commencement 2018 speaker. The event also included remarks by 2018 student speaker and KAUST Ph.D. graduate Nada Aljassim, the first KAUST Gifted Student Program participant to receive her Ph.D. from the university. 

In his chairman’s address, Al-Falih said the event was “an occasion … to mark a number of milestones and celebrations … In the past year alone, KAUST has … achieved important advances in research, education, innovation and talent, all while making an impact … in Saudi Arabia and globally.” 

“KAUST has taken its place on the world’s scientific and academic landscape,” Al-Naimi said. “Ideas and innovations (from KAUST) … make a difference when they soar above our nation and around the world.” 

“As a university, we are looking forward to our next decade,” said President Chan, a member of the university’s Board of Trustees for seven years. “In my new position, I am really looking forward to the opportunity and challenge and becoming engaged with Saudi society in general.” 

President Chan noted one aim of his presidency is “to align KAUST’s mission with the Kingdom’s priorities — and in particular Vision 2030. The Kingdom is moving to diversifying the economy and toward innovation and technology, which align with KAUST.” 

Chan said: “We have formed a NEOM Center of Excellence at KAUST with the express purpose of working together with NEOM. One of our senior faculty members, Professor Carlos Duarte, is on the advisory board for the Red Sea Project. We have a KAUST Red Sea Research Center and we are located next to the Red Sea, which is a treasure for the Kingdom. We consider it one of our missions to support the projects going on in the Kingdom.” 

“KAUST is still very young, but we see ourselves as contributing to the innovation and economic development of the country and the development of human talent,” he added.