Sept. 6 2019 06:05 AM

Heartland serves clients through its five regional companies.


Sterling Investment Partners, Westport, Connecticut, a middle market private equity firm, has announced that it has made a majority equity investment in HeartLand, in partnership with management. HeartLand is a provider of commercial landscape and facilities services currently operating in five markets across the central U.S. The company’s founder, Edward Schatz Jr., backed by a proven and entrepreneurial team of green industry executives, chose to partner with Sterling to continue building a scalable platform in the industry. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Headquartered in Kansas City, HeartLand serves clients through its five regional companies: Signature Landscape in Kansas City; Columbia Landcare in Central Missouri; Keesen Landscape in Denver; Hillenmeyer Landscape in Lexington, Kentucky; and JML Landscape in Pittsburgh. Their services include full-service maintenance, landscape enhancements, and snow and ice management.

Each operating platform is a leader in their respective market, with strong brand reputations for high-quality work, responsiveness, reliability, excellent communication and sustaining long-term client relationships. HeartLand's leadership team includes CEO Edward Schatz Jr., Chief Development Officer Bill Dellecker, and CFO Peter Welch, who each have vast experience building successful businesses within the commercial landscape industry.

“We conducted an intensive and focused search to secure a new financial partner who will support our continued growth; that process led us to the ultimate selection of Sterling Investment Partners,” says Schatz. “While they possess the depth of financial resources we needed, they also bring an understanding of and enthusiasm for this business. Their proven track record and management partnership philosophy has resulted in the growth and development of multiple firms over the years and we are confident they will help HeartLand achieve that same level of success. We'll make a strong team!”

“We are very excited to partner with HeartLand's entrepreneurial team, who have a compelling history of success in the space,” says Charles Santoro, managing partner and co-founder of Sterling. “We look forward to working with the company to expand its geographic reach, as the team continues to build a world-class platform.”