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Arkansas Development Finance Authority


April 4, 2013

Gene Eagle, Vice President for Development Finance, 501-682-5905,
Derrick Rose, Public Information Officer, 501-682-5904,


Petra Capital Partners Supports the Acquisition and Growth of Two Arkansas Based Companies


In 2008, the Arkansas Institutional Fund, an investment program of the Arkansas Development Finance Authority, made a $4.5 million investment into the $159 million Petra Growth Fund II managed by Petra Capital Partners of Nashville, TN.  This investment was made with the understanding that Petra would actively seek investment opportunities in Arkansas.  In 2012, Petra provided capital to support the acquisition of two Arkansas based companies both of which plan to expand operations in the state of Arkansas.

Mike Blackburn, Managing Partner at Petra commented, “We were pleased to find attractive investment opportunities in Arkansas and believe the state offers compelling opportunities to finance companies that fit our investment strategy of supplying flexible capital to high growth companies.”

In December of 2012, Petra portfolio company WellNow Urgent Care Holdings acquired Sherwood Urgent Care of Searcy, Arkansas through a newly formed subsidiary WellNow Urgent Care of Arkansas.  WellNow Urgent Care Holdings, Inc., is a Nashville, Tennessee based operator of urgent care clinics in underserved markets throughout the Southeast where a primary care gap exists.  Sherwood Urgent Care operates six clinics in central Arkansas.  The clinics provide acute care, family medicine, occupational medicine, sports physicals, drug screens and other walk-in services.  WellNow Arkansas plans to expand its base of clinics in Arkansas to bring high quality healthcare to underserved communities throughout the state.

In July of 2012, Petra portfolio company Apollo Brands, LLC, acquired Bear River International of Bentonville, Arkansas.  Apollo Brands, LLC, is a Dallas, TX based provider of opening price point (“OPP”) electronics and related accessories.  Apollo Brands partners with retailers who seek the benefits of carrying OPP products without the risk of managing the supply chain, innovation cycle and customer service requirements.  Bear River International (“BRI”), is a Bentonville, Arkansas based provider of OPP consumer products including remote control vehicles, pre-school toys and Airsoft guns and accessories.  BRI was established in 2009 when the founder, a Wal-Mart buyer of nine years, realized “gaps” existed within certain product lines carried by Wal-Mart.  In addition to BRI’s existing portfolio of OPP products, the company has a pipeline of products in development to continue to build on its growing presence in the OPP market. 

Gene Eagle, Vice President for Development Finance said, “When the Arkansas Institutional Fund was initially capitalized, we knew we were setting long term goals for economic success.”  

Established in 2003 in an effort to strengthen the venture capital network in Arkansas and promote economic growth within the State, the Arkansas Institutional Fund is authorized to invest in professionally managed venture capital funds that in turn make risk capital more accessible to promising Arkansas firms.

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About Petra Capital Partners

Petra Capital Partners, LLC is a private equity firm based in Nashville, Tennessee. The firm is actively seeking investments for its third SBIC fund, Petra Growth Fund III, which has a $225 million target. Its previous funds under management total $290 million. Petra provides structured capital to high growth companies for expansion, acquisition, buyout, refinancing or recapitalization. Petra seeks to invest up to $20 million in growth companies that possess a minimum of $10 million in revenue and positive EBITDA at the time of investment. The fund targets business, healthcare and information technology services companies. For more information, please visit Petra's website at or call (615) 313-5999.

About the Arkansas Development Finance Authority

The Arkansas Development Finance Authority (ADFA) is committed to responding to the changing needs of Arkansas’ growing, increasingly diverse population and business community. Since its creation in 1985, ADFA has become the state’s largest source of low-cost financing for low-to-moderate income housing development, small industries, government, education, agricultural business enterprises and healthcare. Through the issuance of taxable and tax-exempt bonds and notes, the administration of private and public grants and partnerships with state and federal agencies, ADFA gives Arkansans the most cost-effective financing choices possible. In 2001, bond guaranty legislation was modified to allow ADFA to utilize credit enhancement and state tax credits to finance “fund of funds” venture capital investments. In 2003m the $70 million Arkansas Institutional Fund was created.

About Cimarron Capital Partners

Cimarron is a leading national investment management firm specializing in regional private equity. The firm serves as fund manager for the Arkansas Institutional Fund.


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