Cequel III-Led Investor Group Acquires Controlling Interest in DDC Cabinet Technology
DDC Products are Key Components of Infrastructure Supporting Artificial Intelligence
LOUIS (January 31, 2024) – Following an initial investment last year, Cequel III announced today that it, with Thompson Street Capital Partners, has taken a controlling interest in privately held DDC Cabinet Technology. Co-founders Chris Orlando and Mark Ortenzi, who launched the DDC Cabinet business in 2011, will continue as minority investors. Financial details of the transaction were not disclosed.
DDC is a global leader in the design and manufacturing of innovative data center cabinet and cooling solutions. Among other uses, patented DDC solutions provide superior, cost-effective cooling options for high-density GPU and related computing clusters, which are required to run artificial intelligence (AI) and similar compute-intensive applications. DDC products combine the efficiency of water-based heat-exchange with the flexibility and ease of deployment of traditional air cooling. This hybrid approach is optimized with proprietary software to allow companies to rack high density IT servers and related equipment as they have traditionally done, scaling up to 85 kW per cabinet without the need for direct liquid cooling.
“DDC Cabinet Technology offers truly exceptional, best-in-class cooling management solutions, and we’re seeing the demand for this equipment increase significantly with the rapid proliferation of AI and machine learning,” said Cequel III Chairman and CEO Jerry Kent. “Our investor group is understandably excited about DDC’s prospects. The company is uniquely positioned to serve the data center operators, software developers, and cloud service providers that are powering the future of artificial intelligence.”
“DDC’s unique ability to surgically manage airflow volume and heat exchange makes it an ideal solution for data centers and end users alike. It’s a rapidly deployable solution that addresses exponential increases in rack level density, while improving energy efficiency and overall hardware performance,” said Orlando. “This investment will enable us to expand the reach and scalability of DDC technology, just as demand for these types of products explode.”
Following this transaction, Keith Markley will become Chief Executive Officer of DDC Cabinet Technology, effective February 5. Markley is a 30-year veteran of the telecommunications and data center sectors and previously served as Executive Vice President, Data Center Operations at TierPoint, a major DDC Cabinet Technology customer and leading provider of secure, connected IT infrastructure solutions to thousands of clients. Cequel III and Thompson Street are also investors in TierPoint. Reporting to Markley, DDC co-founders Orlando and Ortenzi will lead strategy and product innovation, respectively, as the company scales to meet the significant growth of high-density demands within the data center industry.
In this transaction, Hogan Lovells US LLP acted as legal advisor to Cequel III and Kirkland & Ellis LLP as legal advisor to Thompson Street. VLP Law Group LLP acted as legal advisor and DH Capital, a division of Citizens JMP Securities, LLC as financial advisor to DDC.
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About Cequel III
Cequel III (cequel3.com) is a private investment firm based in St. Louis, Missouri. The team has a well-established track record of over $40 billion in successful transactions, having helped build several, industry-leading companies through operational excellence and a focus on superior customer service. With a diverse and successful history as an investor operator, Cequel III today has established a strong reputation as a reliable, knowledgeable investment partner for the management teams of lower-mid-market, growth-oriented companies in a number of sectors, including real estate, healthcare, technology, and business services.
About Thompson Street Capital Partners (TSCP)
Thompson Street Capital Partners (tscp.com) is a middle-market private equity firm that helps transform already exceptional businesses into market leaders. Based in St. Louis, Missouri, TSCP invests globally in the life sciences and healthcare, software and technology, business and consumer services and products sectors. TSCP partners with management teams to increase value by accelerating growth, both organically and via complementary acquisitions.