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Issue Date: Vol. 50, No. 7, July 2010, Posted On: 7/3/2010

Armand Billiards Group Splits Into 2 Entities

Nick Montano

Aramith North America, Armand Billiards Group, Aramith billiard balls, billiard balls, Saluc SA, C.L. Bailey, billiards, pool table, cueball, home recreation products, Armand Capital Group, Denis Mola


CHICAGO -- Armand Billiards Group, a manufacturer and distributor of billiard and gameroom products for specialty retailers in North America, has split its businesses into two entities.

ABG has divested C.L. Bailey Co., a pool table maker, which has been acquired by an investment group that includes the original owners. Armand Capital Group, a Chicago-based private equity firm and parent of Belgium's Saluc SA, maker of renowned Aramith billiard balls, acquired C.L. Bailey in 2007.

The businesses related to Aramith products, Fusion pool tables and the manufacture of industrial balls will continue to operate as part of Aramith North America.

Armand Capital Group president Denis Mola said the U.S. billiard industry has undergone "serious challenges" in recent years and will require several years to recover and regain the profitability level attained in 2006.

"In this context," Mola explained, "we prefer to continue to invest in strategies centered on strong, leading brands with differentiated, high-quality products. As such, we have decided to pursue further growth around the Aramith and Fusion brands in billiards, as well in the industrial ball market with our Preciball USA division, and to divest from the more traditional products."

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