December 12, 2017
J.W. Childs Associates Acquires Outward Hound

BOSTON, December 12, 2017 – J.W. Childs Associates, L.P., a private equity firm focused on operational value creation in middle-market growth companies, today announced it has acquired Outward Hound, an innovator, manufacturer and distributor of dog & cat toys, games, gear, collars, and feeders. Founder Kyle Hansen will retain a significant stake in the business.

“Outward Hound will continue creating innovative products in the pet space and could not be more excited about our new partnership with J.W. Childs that will benefit both our retail partners and consumers,” said Outward Hound Founder & CWO (Chief Woof Officer) Kyle Hansen. “We completed four acquisitions over the last three years including Petstages, Dublin Dog, Nina Ottosson and Bionic with the goal now of further expanding our portfolio in current and new categories.”

“We’re excited about our investment in Outward Hound and the fantastic leadership team that has built one of the fastest growing brands in the pet space,” said J.W. Childs Partner David Fiorentino. “The innovative product portfolio in multiple categories creates exciting opportunities to deliver great products for pet parents and accelerate growth.”

Phil Damiano, Operating Partner at J.W. Childs, has been appointed Chairman of the Board, working closely with Kyle Hansen and management. Phil has been involved with numerous brands over the last three decades, including his tenure as President of DYMO, COO of Velcro and CEO of IdeaPaint. Phil commented, “I’ve been very impressed with the performance the Outward Hound management team has delivered. I’m excited to be working closely with Kyle and the executive team to further grow and develop the Outward Hound family of brands.”

Four executives from J.W. Childs will join Kyle Hansen on the Outward Hound Board of Directors: Partners David Fiorentino and Adam Suttin, Operating Partner Phil Damiano and Vice President Kyle Casella.

McDermott Will & Emery served as legal counsel to J.W. Childs. Jones Day served as legal counsel and CapitalValue Advisors, of Denver, as financial advisor to Outward Hound.

About Outward Hound

Outward Hound creates meaningful innovations that solve big problems for pet parents and is a leader in dog & cat supplies sold around the world. Outward Hound is an award-winning innovator, manufacturer and distributor of the highest quality toys, games, gear, collars, and feeders under the Outward Hound, Petstages, Bionic, Nina Ottosson and Dublin Dog brands. For more information, please visit and check out how we Raise The Woof on Facebook or Instagram every day.

About J.W. Childs Associates, L.P.

J.W. Childs is a Boston-based private equity firm focused on investing in middle-market growth companies. Since inception in 1995, J.W. Childs has invested in excess of $3.5 billion of equity capital in 48 companies across the consumer, specialty retail and healthcare industries. The firm’s success has been built on its industry focus and the extensive operating expertise of its partners. For more information, please visit