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AWP Safety, Backed by Kohlberg & Co., Announces Strategic Acquisition of RHV Capital’s Traffic Control Group

Press Releases, August 2, 2023
AWP Safety acquires three leading regional safety companies from RHV Capital and the operations of Texas Traffic and Barricade.

North Canton, Ohio – AWP Safety, North America’s leading provider of safety and traffic control solutions, has announced its strategic acquisition of RHV Capital’s Traffic Control Group, which is comprised of three regional entities, and Texas Traffic and Barricade.  The acquisition further expands AWP Safety’s position as the leading traffic control safety company to the North American utility, broadband and infrastructure end-markets. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed. AWP Safety is majority-owned by Kohlberg & Company, a leading private equity firm based in Mount Kisco, NY.

The transaction includes RHV Capital’s Arrive Alive Traffic Control (“AATC”) in Orlando, FL; Give ‘Em a Brake Safety (“Give ‘Em a Brake”) in Grand Rapids, MI; and Stay Alert Safety Services LLC (“Stay Alert”), in Kernersville, NC. AWP Safety also acquired Texas Traffic and Barricade based in Pantego, TX. Together, the combined companies will have the scale, resources and reach to deliver superior traffic control and safety services to a growing list of customers focused on delivering affordable energy, broadband, and transportation infrastructure. Customers will benefit from an enhanced service offering, next-generation safety technology and unmatched expertise in the design and protection of work zones.

Rob Sehnert, president and chief executive officer of AWP Safety is the CEO of the combined business. Operating in 28 states and 4 Canadian provinces from over 163 locations, the combined company has a talent pool of more than 7,800 employees delivering industry-leading service.

“AWP Safety continues to grow its scale and portfolio to manage complex customer needs across utility, broadband and transportation infrastructure,” said Rob Sehnert. “This latest acquisition strengthens our existing leadership in worksite protection services, traffic control planning and equipment sales and rentals. We are extremely excited about the expertise, leadership and passion for safety the new companies bring to the AWP Safety family.” 

“We are delighted with our continued partnership with the AWP Safety team. The Company has established itself as the leading provider of worksite safety solutions in North America with a best-in-class management team led by CEO Rob Sehnert. The company’s historical robust growth rate and transformation are expected to continue for years to come, underpinned by the country’s critical infrastructure investments and required safety workers to support upgrade and repair work. We believe this highly strategic combination positions the business exceptionally to capture these growth opportunities,” said Benjamin Mao, Partner of Kohlberg.

“We are excited to complete another successful acquisition for AWP Safety that complements its existing offerings and expands its national footprint. The four companies that are joining the AWP Safety platform have established themselves as leading worksite safety providers in their respective regions. We look forward to partnering with the management teams to accelerate their growth and strategic objectives,” added Gus Harwood, Managing Director of Kohlberg.

The leadership from all four acquired entities will remain with the combined company to provide strategic regional oversight and manage the successful integration of their companies into the AWP Safety family of brands.

Jim Babcock, president of Stay Alert, noted, “Today, the leading traffic control solutions provider in North and South Carolina joins the largest traffic control solutions provider in North America. Stay Alert’s 160 employees are excited to become a part of AWP Safety’s growing team of safety experts.” 

Jamie Lemke, president of Give ‘Em a Brake, said, “With nine locations, we are the only traffic control solutions provider serving the entire state of Michigan. We are excited to help extend AWP Safety’s extensive portfolio of technology, products and services to our local communities.” 

Chris Caywood, president of Texas Traffic and Barricade, said, “We pride ourselves on the quality of our outstanding team’s rapidly expanding utility services. We are excited about our future with AWP Safety and the advantages of safety, reliability and scale that it will afford every one of our customers.”  

David Feise, president of AATC, added, “Our team has an excellent reputation for protecting workers and the public as Florida completes some of America’s largest roadway construction projects, including many with the Florida Department of Transportation. Partnering with AWP Safety helps us both bolster our position in this market and deliver more comprehensive safety solutions on the Southeastern U.S. through our three locations.”

Harris Williams and Stifel served as financial advisors and Ropes & Gray served as legal advisors to AWP Safety on the transaction.

Macquarie Capital served as financial advisors and Bodman PLC served as legal advisors to RHV Capital’s Traffic Control Group and Texas Traffic and Barricade on the transaction.


About AWP Safety
AWP Safety is North America’s leading worksite safety partner, protecting those who build our infrastructure. Our growing family of safety brands includes Advantage Barricade & Roadmarks, Crossroads, MOTPlans, Northwest Traffic Services, Safety First, Statewide Safety Systems, Trafficade Service Companies, and Traffic Safety Rentals. AWP Safety’s capabilities range from work zone flagging to design and engineering for transportation management plans, equipment sales, rentals and 24/7 support. We employ 7,800 team members across 28 U.S. states and four Canadian provinces.

About Kohlberg & Company
Kohlberg is a leading U.S. middle market private equity firm based in Mount Kisco, New York. Over the firm’s 36-year history, the firm has organized 11 private equity vehicles totaling in aggregate over $14 billion. Since inception, the firm’s private equity investments have generated over $10 billion in realized returns with no realized losses since 2007. The firm invests in leading middle market businesses that are identified through its rigorous White Paper Program in its six core practice areas. For more information, please visit


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