Association Management Company Naylor Acquired by RLJ Equity Partners

December 22, 2013

Gainesville, Fla.-based association management company Naylor was acquired by RLJ Equity Partners from private equity firm Clarity Partners.

Naylor provides customized communication and business services that include a full suite of print and digital media, event management, exchange event and related marketing and business services for almost 500 associations in the United States and Canada.

“Naylor is the leading brand in the outsourced communications and business services marketplace for associations in North America,” said Jerry L. Johnson, managing director of RLJ Equity Partners and the new Chairman of Naylor.

He added, “The company has a longstanding history of providing the most comprehensive and innovative services to its association partners, and we look forward to partnering with CEO Alex DeBarr and his management team to continue improving and evolving Naylor’s offerings.”

RLJ Equity Partners is a Bethesda, Md.-based private equity firm created in 2006 by Robert L. Johnson, founder of Black Entertainment Television (BET) and founder and chairman of The RLJ Companies.

RLJ has affiliate operations in Charlotte, N.C.; Little Rock, Ark.; Los Angeles; San Juan, P.R.; and Monrovia, Liberia.

“We are delighted to join forces with RLJ Equity Partners,” said Alex DeBarr, CEO of Naylor.

He added, “Jerry and the RLJ team will provide us great access to human and financial resources. They recognize the great opportunity we have to continue to build our company and our offerings for associations, advertisers and exhibitors through organic expansion and acquisition. And our planning has already begun.”

Naylor will remain headquartered in Gainesville and will maintain its current offices in Atlanta; Fairfax, Va.; Darien, Conn.; and Winnipeg, Manitoba. 

Here are just some of the shows run by Naylor CMG, the company’s events division:

American Food Fair

Builder Exchange 2013

Composites 2013


FMI 2014

IANA Intermodal Expo

Motorcoach Expo

NAFA Institute & Expo

National Golf Course Owners Association’s Golf Industry

NITL TransComp Exhibition



“Our management team, internal structure and overall business will remain intact,” DeBarr said.

He added, “RLJ wants to support our existing strategy for serving the unique needs of associations in the U.S. and Canada and provide the resources to improve the strategy and make sure it gets executed. This is really a win-win for Naylor and our customers and partners.”

Naylor maintains multi-year exclusive contractual relationships with nearly 500 professional societies and trade associations representing more than 110 industries.

The company currently manages nearly 2,000 print and digital media projects, manages 17 trade shows, owns 14 exchange (appointment) events and provides content consulting and marketing services as well. 

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