• Background: Validus Pharmaceuticals LLC (“Validus”), headquartered in Parsippany, NJ, is a pharmaceutical holding company focused on the acquisition, reformulation, and commercialization of prescription products.

  • Cassel Salpeter:
    • Served as financial advisor to the company
    • Ran a broad, competitive sales process, identifying and contacting strategic and financial buyers both in the U.S. and internationally
    • Successfully identified a strategic acquirer looking to expand its presence in the U.S. markets through a platform acquisition
  • Challenges:
    • Navigating the regulatory hurdles of selling to an international buyer
    • Carving out certain products in the Validus portfolio for sales to other buyers
    • Ensuring a seamless technology transfer and transition of products with existing distribution agreements
  • Outcome: In February 2024, Validus was acquired by Rubicon Research (“Rubicon”).  Rubicon is a specialty pharmaceutical company focused on the manufacturing of drugs across multiple dosage forms.  The acquisition of Validus will expand their presence in the U.S. market for the manufacture and sale of prescription pharmaceuticals.

SLS Consulting

  • Background: SLS Consulting, LLC (“SLS”), headquartered in Coral Gables, FL, is a premier provider of fire protection and life safety services, including code compliance, fulfillment, consulting, and several other compliance solutions. 
  • Cassel Salpeter:
    • Served as financial advisor to the company
    • Facilitated the due diligence process, working closely with the team to quickly and clearly answer acquirer’s questions
    • Assisted in the structuring, negotiating, and closing of the transaction
  • Challenges:
    • With inbound interest, the seller did not have the opportunity to prepare for a sales process
    • Navigating the complexities of selling the core business through a stock deal and certain other assets via an asset deal
    • Ensuring owner’s other business ventures remained outside of the scope of the transaction
  • Outcome: In November 2023, SLS was acquired by SOCOTEC USA (“SOCOTEC”).  SOCOTEC is a leading provider of TIC (Testing, Inspection, and Certification), consulting, and advisory services.  The acquisition of SLS will strengthen SOCOTEC’s code compliance and planning presence and lead to the formation of the new SOCOTEC Life Safety division.

P3 Technologies

  • Background: P3 Technologies, LLC (“P3”), headquartered in Jupiter, FL, is a custom turbomachinery engineering, product development and manufacturing business providing differentiated propulsion, power, and pumps technologies for the space, new energy and medical markets.
  • Cassel Salpeter:
    • Served as financial advisor to the company
    • Ran a focused, competitive sales process, identifying and contacting strategic and financial buyers
    • Successfully identified a strategic acquirer looking to enhance its technological capabilities and expand its turbomachinery solutions
  • Challenges:
    • Achieving a seamless transaction without interrupting the business
    • Founder seeking to transfer back-office responsibilities in order to focus on the primary business
    • Project-based business with periodic, significant client wins
  • Outcome: In November 2023, P3 was acquired by Graham Corporation (NYSE: GHM) (“Graham”).  Graham is a global leader in the design and manufacture of mission critical fluid, power, heat transfer and vacuum technologies for the defense, space, and energy industries.  P3 integrates seamlessly into Graham’s Barber-Nichols (“BN”) brand, bringing highly complementary technology that enhances BN’s turbomachinery solutions.

Patriot Transportation and United Petroleum Transports to Combine

Wednesday, 1 November  2023

Combined Company to Capitalize on Significant Growth in 5G,

Targeting Opportunities in mmWave and Multi-Edge Computing


Patriot Transportation Shareholders to Receive $16.26 per Share in Cash

JACKSONVILLE, FL / ACCESSWIRE / November 1, 2023 / Patriot Transportation Holding, Inc. (NASDAQ:PATI) (“Patriot” or the “Company”), today announced an agreement under which United Petroleum Transports, Inc. (“UPT”) will acquire all of the outstanding shares of Patriot common stock for $16.26 per share in cash. The transaction values Patriot Transportation at approximately $65.9 million, including assumed cash and debt.

The combination advances UPT’s and Patriot’s shared vision to become a top five bulk tank carrier by revenue with combined revenues in excess of $200 million and to become the premier tank truck company in the southern United States. Upon completion of the transaction, the combined company will have over 1,000 drivers servicing markets from Arizona to Florida covering 11 states with over 30 terminals. The companies have strong market brands and operate with a similar culture focused on safety and quality customer service. To capitalize on its strong brand and reputation, UPT will continue to operate Patriot’s business through Patriot’s subsidiary, Florida Rock & Tank Lines, Inc. (“Florida Rock”). UPT will utilize the combined company strength, the highquality employees and large regional and national customer base to strategically grow the business.

Florida Rock serves the southeastern United States as a premier bulk tank carrier specializing in hauling primarily petroleumrelated products and other liquid and dry bulk commodities. One of the largest regional tank truck carriers in North America, Florida Rock operates in Florida, Georgia, Alabama, and Tennessee with 17 terminals and six satellite locations.

“Patriot is the perfect match for UPT’s strategic intention to expand our network to the southeastern United States,” said Greg Price, Executive Chairman of UPT. We are pleased to welcome one of the leading bulk and tank trucking providers to UPT’s family. Together we will enhance our shared value proposition and invest in exciting growth opportunities providing transportation solutions for new and existing customers.”

Tom Baker, Patriot’s Chairman of the Board said, “We have operated this business for many years, and we appreciate that the quality of the
organization is being recognized by UPT. We appreciate the support of our shareholders and believe this transaction rewards them for their unwavering

“We are thrilled to partner with a company like UPT that appreciates Patriot’s proud history and is closely aligned with our mission and culture which is focused on safety, our customers and our employees. I believe the combined strength of the management teams will allow us to execute a strategic plan for growth beyond our current footprint. I appreciate UPT’s executive leadership recognizing our strong brand and quality employees and look forward to working side by side with their management team. I am also thankful to Patriot’s Board of Directors, shareholders and the Baker family for their support over the many years here at Patriot,” said Rob Sandlin, President and CEO of Patriot.

Transaction Details

The transaction, which has been unanimously approved by Patriot’s Board of Directors, is subject to the satisfaction of other customary closing conditions, including the approval of Patriot’s shareholders. Shareholders owning 26.6% of the voting power of Patriot’s common stock have agreed to vote in favor of the merger, subject to customary exceptions. Upon completion of the transaction, which the parties expect will occur by early 2024, Patriot will become a private company and delist from the NASDAQ Global Select Market. UPT has obtained a customary financing commitment from an established lending institution pursuant to which the lender will provide financing that, together with other available sources, is expected to be sufficient to fund the merger consideration and other obligations under the merger agreement.

The definitive merger agreement includes a 30day “goshop” period that will expire on December 1, 2023, which permits Patriot and its representatives to actively solicit and consider alternative acquisition proposals. There can be no assurance that this process will result in a superior proposal, and the Company does not intend to disclose developments with respect to the goshop process unless and until it determines such disclosure is appropriate or is otherwise required.


Cassel Salpeter & Co., LLC is serving as financial advisor and Foley & Lardner LLP is serving as legal counsel for Patriot.

Stephens Inc. is serving as financial advisor and Scudder Law Firm, P.C., L.L.O. is acting as legal counsel for UPT.

About Patriot Transportation Holding, Inc.

Patriot conducts business through its wholly owned subsidiary, Florida Rock. The Company transports petroleum and other liquids and dry bulk commodities. A large portion of the Company’s business consists of hauling liquid petroleum products (mostly gas and diesel fuel) from large scale fuel storage facilities to the customers’ retail outlets (e.g., convenience stores, truck stops and fuel depots) where it offloads the product into its customers’ fuel storage tanks for ultimate sale to the retail consumer. The Company also hauls dry bulk commodities such as cement, lime and various industrial powder products, water and liquid chemicals. The Company currently operates 19 terminals in addition to numerous truck domicile locations throughout the Southeast. With one of the most modern tank fleets available in the industry, the Company is composed of more than 300 tractors and 400 trailers.

About United Petroleum Transports, Inc.

Founded in 1966, United Petroleum Transports is the largest carrier of motor fuels, aviation fuels and chemicals in the Southwest, with Customer Service Centers in Alabama, Arizona, Georgia, Kansas, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas. Headquartered in Oklahoma City, UPT is a leader in the tank truck industry, with a professional driver base of more than 650 professional drivers who safely and dependably serve UPT customers across the USA and Canada.

Additional Information About the Merger and Where to Find It

This communication is being made in respect of the proposed merger involving Patriot and UPT. A meeting of the shareholders of Patriot will be announced to seek shareholder approval in connection with the proposed merger. Patriot will file with the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) a proxy statement and other relevant documents in connection with the proposed merger. The definitive proxy statement will be sent or given to the shareholders of Patriot and will contain important information about the proposed merger and related matters. INVESTORS AND SHAREHOLDERS OF PATRIOT TRANSPORTATION HOLDING, INC. SHOULD READ THE DEFINITIVE PROXY STATEMENT AND OTHER RELEVANT MATERIALS CAREFULLY AND IN THEIR ENTIRETY WHEN THEY BECOME AVAILABLE BECAUSE THEY WILL CONTAIN IMPORTANT INFORMATION ABOUT PATRIOT TRANSPORTATION HOLDING, INC., UNITED PETROLEUM TRANSPORTS, INC., AND THE MERGER. Investors may obtain a free copy of these materials (when they are available) and other documents filed by Patriot with the SEC at the SEC’s website at, at Patriot’s website at or by sending a written request to the Patriot’s Secretary at 200 W. Forsyth Street, 7th Floor, Jacksonville, FL 32202.

Participants in the Solicitation

Patriot and its directors, executive officers and certain other members of management and employees may be deemed to be participants in soliciting proxies from its shareholders in connection with the merger. Information regarding the persons who may, under the rules of the SEC, be considered to be participants in the solicitation of Patriot’s shareholders in connection with the merger will be set forth in Patriot’s definitive proxy statement for its shareholder meeting. Additional information regarding these individuals and any direct or indirect interests they may have in the merger will be set forth in the definitive proxy statement when it is filed with the SEC in connection with the merger. Information relating to the foregoing can also be found in Patriot’s definitive proxy statement for its 2023 Annual Meeting of Shareholders (the “Annual Meeting Proxy Statement“), which was filed with the SEC on December 9, 2022. To the extent that holdings of Patriot’s securities have changed since the amounts set forth in the Annual Meeting Proxy Statement, such changes have been or will be reflected on Statements of Change in Ownership on Form 4 filed with the SEC.

Forward Looking Statements

This announcement contains “forwardlooking statements,” within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, including statements relating to the completion of the merger.

These forwardlooking statements are generally denoted by the use of words such as “anticipate,” “believe,” “expect,” “intend,” “aim,” “target,” “plan,” “continue,” “estimate,” “project,” “may,” “will,” “should,” and similar expressions. However, the absence of these words or similar expressions does not mean that a statement is not forwardlooking. These statements reflect management’s current beliefs and are based on information currently available to management. Forwardlooking statements are based upon a number of estimates and assumptions that, while considered reasonable by management, are inherently subject to known and unknown risks and uncertainties and other factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from historical results or those anticipated. These factors include, but are not limited to: (a) the satisfaction of the conditions precedent to the consummation of the merger, including, without limitation, the timely receipt of shareholder approval; (b) uncertainties as to the timing of the merger and the possibility that the merger may not be completed, including uncertainties regarding UPT’s ability to finance the merger; (c) unanticipated difficulties or expenditures relating to the merger; (d) the occurrence of any event, change or other circumstance that could give rise to the termination of the merger agreement, including, in circumstances which would require Patriot to pay a termination fee; (e) legal proceedings, judgments or settlements, including those that may be instituted against Patriot, Patriot’s Board of Directors, Patriot’s executive officers and others following the announcement of the merger; (f) disruptions of current plans and operations caused by the announcement and pendency of the merger; (g) risks related to disruption of management’s attention from Patriot’s ongoing business operations due to the merger; (h) potential difficulties in employee retention due to the announcement and pendency of the merger; (i) the response of customers, suppliers, drivers and regulators to the announcement and pendency of the merger; (j) disruptions in the execution of plans, strategies, goals and objectives of management for future operations caused by the merger; (k) changes in accounting standards or tax rates, laws or regulations; (l) economic, market, business or geopolitical conditions (including resulting from the COVID19 pandemic, inflation, the conflict in Ukraine and related sanctions, or the conflict in the Middle East) or competition, or changes in such conditions, negatively affecting Patriot’s business, operations and financial performance; (m) risks that the price of Patriot’s common stock may decline significantly if the merger is not completed; (n) the possibility that Patriot could, following the merger, engage in operational or other changes that could result in meaningful appreciation in its value; and (o) the possibility that Patriot could, at a later date, engage in unspecified transactions, including restructuring efforts, special dividends or the sale of some or all of Patriot’s assets to one or more as yet unknown purchasers, which could conceivably produce a higher aggregate value than that available to Patriot’s shareholders in the merger. Accordingly, no assurances can be given that any of the events anticipated by the forward-looking statements will occur or if any occur, what effect they will have on Patriot’s results of operations or financial condition.

If the proposed merger is consummated, Patriot’s shareholders will cease to have any equity interest in Patriot and will have no right to participate in its earnings and future growth. Other factors that could impact Patriot’s forwardlooking statements are identified and described in more detail in Patriot’s Annual Report on Form 10K for the year ended September 30, 2022 as well as Patriot’s subsequent filings and quarterly reports and is available online at Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on Patriot’s projections and other forwardlooking statements, which speak only as of the date thereof. Except as required by applicable law, Patriot undertakes no obligation to update any forwardlooking statement, or to make any other forwardlooking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

Matt McNulty
Chief Financial Officer

SOURCE: Patriot Transportation Holding, Inc.


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  • Background: Provider Network Solutions (“PNS”), based in Miami, FL, is a leading value-based care MSO, managing 3.5 million lives with over 2,000 specialty providers, committed to improving quality care with networks of providers in dermatology, orthopedics, podiatry, and pain management.
  • Cassel Salpeter:
    • Served as financial advisor to the company
    • Conducted a robust process to identify the ideal strategic partner for PNS to achieve its next-level growth objectives
    • Maximized the value of assets contributed to the joint venture while optimizing the value of the assets not involved in the transaction
  • Challenges:
      • Managing the unique requirements of a joint venture, wherein PNS carved-out and contributed its three musculoskeletal networks (orthopedics, podiatry, and pain management) to the joint venture
      • Creating a roadmap for the various agreements covering personnel, administration, and services for the joint venture
  • Outcome: In September 2023, PNS and Healthcare Outcomes Performance Company (“HOPCo”) created a joint venture that acquired PNS’s musculoskeletal networks. The new venture, named HOPCo Network Solutions, is an innovative value-based care platform managing networks in Florida of over 1,100 specialty providers and 1.8 million lives.


  • Background: Athenex, Inc. (“Athenex”), based in Buffalo, NY, is a diversified global biopharmaceutical company dedicated to the sale of specialty pharmaceuticals via licensing agreements with global partners and the development of novel therapies for the treatment of cancer.
  • Cassel Salpeter:
    • Served as financial advisor to the company
    • Conducted a robust sales process, identifying and contacting nearly 300 strategic and financial parties
    • Significantly increased the value of the opening bid by running a competitive auction
    • Worked with the company to monetize ancillary assets to generate incremental value for the estate
  • Challenges:
    • Seeking to sell multiple, unrelated divisions of the company
    • Significant capital needed to fund clinical trial programs for developmental assets post acquisition 
    • Significant cure costs required bidders to negotiate deals with vendors
  • Outcome: In June 2023, the court approved the sale of Athenex’s APD assets to Sagent Pharmaceticals, Inc.  Accounts receivable were sold to Oaktree Capital Management, LP.  Assets related to the Orascovery platform were sold to C-MER Specialty Group Limited (HKG:03309).

Primary Eye Care

  • Background: Primary Eye Care Center, P.C. (“Primary Eye Care Center”), headquartered in Bloomfield, CT, is a highly-regarded eye care practice with three locations and an ambulatory surgical center near Hartford, CT.  The practice developed a strong network over its nearly 60-year history, drawing patients from immediate and surrounding counties.
  • Cassel Salpeter:
    • Served as financial advisor to the company
    • Ran a focused, competitive sales process, identifying and contacting private-equity backed strategic buyers
    • Successfully identified a strategic acquirer for the practice and worked closely with the physician owners to achieve an optimal transaction
  • Challenges:
    • Managing staffing and operational complexities
    • Ensuring that sellers’ post-transaction objectives were met
    • Maximizing and delivering value for the practice
  • Outcome: In June 2023, Primary Eye Care Center was acquired by ReFocus Management Services, LLC, (“ReFocus”).  ReFocus is an eye care management services organization with locations across the Northeastern  U.S. and is a portfolio company of Zenyth Partners.

Flourish Research Holdings, LLC Acquired Central Research Holdings

  • Background: Central Research Associates, Inc. (“CRA”), based in Birmingham, AL, is a leading, founder-owned, multi-specialty clinical research site, offering clinical trial opportunities to patients in Birmingham and the surrounding areas.
  • Cassel Salpeter:
    • Served as financial advisor to CRA
    • Successfully identified a strategic buyer interested in expanding its footprint in the Southeastern U.S.
    • Was deeply involved in the process from buyer selection through closing
  • Challenges:
    • Expedited marketing process to ensure the sellers timeline was met
    • Maintained original deal timeline despite challenging market conditions
    • Navigating extensive diligence process without interrupting the business
  • Outcome: In April 2023, CRA was acquired by Flourish Research Holdings, LLC (“Flourish Research”), a large clinical trial site network in the U.S.

Corbett Technology Solutions, Inc. Acquired Firecom

  • Background: Firecom, Inc. (“Firecom”), based in Woodside, NY, is the largest fire alarm company in New York City, servicing approximately 800 high-rise buildings, and is one of only five companies in the U.S. to manufacture its own fire life safety systems for high-rise buildings.
  • Cassel Salpeter:
    • Served as financial advisor to the company
    • Ran a highly-focused competitive sales process, identifying and contacting strategic buyers
    • Assisted in the structuring, negotiating, and closing of the transaction
  • Challenges:
    • Maximizing and delivering value for synergies
    • Managing ownership and operational complexities
    • Navigating extensive diligence review process
  • Outcome: In June 2022, Firecom was acquired by Corbett Technology Solutions, Inc. (“CTSI”), a leading provider of communication, collaboration, life-safety, and security solutions for clients across the East Coast.  CTSI is a portfolio company of Wind Point Partners.

M3 Wake Research acquired MSRA Company

  • Background: Multi-Specialty Research Associates (“MSRA”), based in Lake City, FL, is a founder-owned clinical research site, conducting Phase I-IV clinical trials. Since its inception, MSRA, a leader in clinical trials, has conducted clinical trials for leading sponsors in therapeutics, vaccines and diagnostics.
  • Cassel Salpeter:
    • Served as financial advisor to the company
    • Ran a focused, competitive sales process, identifying and contacting strategic and financial buyers
    • Successfully identified a strategic buyer interested in expanding its operations in Florida
    • Was extensively involved in the process from buyer selection through closing
  • Challenges:
    • Expedited sale and due dilligence process to ensure the sellers timeline was met
    • Balancing seller’s objectives to maximize value while preserving organizational structure
  • Outcome: In May 2022, MSRA was acquired by M3 Wake Research, headquartered in Raleigh, NC, an integrated organization of premier investigational sites, with over 16 research locations throughout the U.S.