Jacuzzi Brands entered into an agreement to sell its Eljer Plumbingware business to an affiliate of Sun Capital Partners, a private investment firm. The transaction is expected to close by the end of Jacuzzi Brand's third quarter ending July 2. Terms of the sale were not disclosed.

Eljer reported an operating loss of $30.7 million on sales of $150.5 million for the fiscal year ended Oct. 2, 2004. For the first six months of fiscal 2005 ended April 2, Eljer recorded an operating loss of $2.9 million on sales of $69.2 million.

An affiliate of Sun Capital Partners will assume substantially all current assets and liabilities of Eljer, the long term retiree medical liability and certain other liabilities, and also take the Ford City, Pa., and Tupelo, Miss., operations. Jacuzzi Brands will retain the Salem, Ohio, manufacturing facility property that was closed in fiscal 2004.

“Despite ongoing product rationalization efforts and other initiatives, Eljer has continued to incur losses and consume a significant amount of management's time,” David H. Clarke, chairman/CEO of Jacuzzi Brands, said in a statement. “This sale, together with the sale of Rexair announced earlier this month, will enable us to devote all our energies on maximizing the value of our Jacuzzi and Zurn operations.”

Sun Capital plans to operate Eljer as a stand-alone portfolio company and maintain the corporate presence in Dallas, according to Bud Terry, managing director. Sun Capital affiliates invest in companies with long-term competitive advantages and significant barriers to entry.

For more information, visit www.SunCapPart.com or www.jacuzzibrands.com.