Signal Hound is in the news! Recently the Portland Business Journal interviewed our new owner and CEO, Harrison Osbourn. This regional press coverage highlights the buzz around Harrison’s purchase of the company and details a bit more about his background and what’s in store for us in the future. Check out the interview on the Portland Business Journal website HERE or read the full article below.
SW Washington radio equipment maker Signal Hound sold to Portland investor
By Jonathan Bach, Staff Reporter, Portland Business Journal – August 8, 2022
Signal Hound, a Battle Ground, Washington, radio equipment company, has sold to a Portland small business investment firm run by a U.S. Navy veteran.
Bridgehouse Capital CEO Harrison Osbourn declined to disclose the full acquisition price, but lender Columbia Pacific Business Finance said it issued a $17 million senior loan to help close the deal. Osbourn said other financing also brought the transaction together.
Signal Hound designs and manufactures test and measurement equipment such as spectrum analyzers and signal generators. Started in 1996 by Bruce Devine as Test Equipment Plus, Signal Hound offers products used by government officials, electronics manufacturers and educational institutions.
“The process of finding the right new owner for Signal Hound was tedious. This company has been my life’s work, and I wanted to be sure of who would be taking it over,” former CEO Devine said in a statement. “I’m confident we have the right person for the job.”
Osbourn, who worked in signal intelligence while he served in the military, took over as CEO of Signal Hound once the transaction closed in May.
The investor said he wanted to find a Portland-area company whose business model and profitability fit his needs. He wanted a company that aligned with his background, too.
“Luckily, Signal Hound hit it on all three of those metrics,” Osbourn said.
He highlighted the company’s diversified and long-term customers, plus its ability to perform under pressure through economic booms and busts. As an example, he said the company grew through the Covid-19 downturn. To be sure, the recession that happened in tandem with the start of the pandemic technically lasted two months, according to the National Bureau of Economic Research.
He remains bullish on the company’s outlet as U.S. gross domestic product, one broad economic indicator, contracts.
“Even as we enter this next recession, we’re going to continue to grow, because we’ve seen strong demand,” the Signal Hound CEO said.
Osbourn brought in a president with an engineering background, Tom Lane, to assist in running research and development and operations.
Lawrence Litchfield, business development director at Columbia Pacific Business Finance, said his group learned about the deal through investment bank Confluence Capital Group, with which it’s worked on transactions in the past.
Osbourn’s experience with products similar to those Signal Hound makes was one of the factors that impressed Columbia Pacific.
“We’ve differentiated ourselves in the market by offering creative and flexible financing structures for entrepreneurs who seek to acquire and operate a privately held business,” Litchfield said. “The transaction that Harrison has structured here and the business that he’s sourced is really a great poster child for that.”