Searchlight Capital Partners and BCI Announce Strategic Investment into Adams Outdoor Advertising


Adams Outdoor Advertising is one of the largest out-of-home media operators in the U.S.

The partnership positions Adams to capitalize on the significant growth opportunity in the U.S. out-of-home advertising industry and across Adams’ local markets.

NEW YORK–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Searchlight Capital Partners, L.P. (“Searchlight”), a leading global private investment firm, in partnership with British Columbia Investment Management Corporation (“BCI”), one of the largest asset managers in Canada, today announced the signing of a definitive agreement for a strategic investment into Adams Outdoor Advertising (“Adams”). Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Adams, founded in 1983 by Steve Adams, is the fourth largest, and largest privately-held, out-of-home media operator in the United States. The family-owned business has been instrumental in promoting the power of outdoor advertising by providing clients with bespoke media solutions to target audiences at the local level. Adams operates in a number of strategically relevant local markets across the states of Illinois, Michigan, North and South Carolina, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Wisconsin.

“Out-of-home plays an important role in the infrastructure of the advertising ecosystem, particularly given the unique and differentiated capabilities that the medium offers for local businesses, governments and economies,” said Darren Glatt, Partner at Searchlight. “As one of the leading investors in the media and technology sectors, Searchlight has been at the forefront of the ongoing evolution of the broader advertising ecosystem. We believe Adams is strongly positioned to continue to capture opportunities presented by the digital transformation of its estate. We look forward to working with Kevin Gleason and his team to further drive Adams’ growth through (i) expanding its footprint, (ii) developing new digital sites, (iii) capitalizing on emerging opportunities around programmatic and technology innovation and (iv) executing on strategic M&A.”

Dave Hong, Senior Managing Director, Private Equity at BCI, added: “We are excited to work with Kevin Gleason, his management team and Searchlight to support the company’s growth. Our investment in Adams aligns with BCI’s long-term investment approach of investing in stable industries that provide compelling risk-adjusted returns for our pension plan and insurance fund clients.”

Kevin Gleason, CEO of Adams, added: “We are delighted to partner with Searchlight and BCI to support Adams’ continued growth and to accelerate the development of our capabilities across various forms of emerging technology. We have always believed that outdoor advertising is more powerful than anyone has yet to imagine and believe that Searchlight’s demonstrated track record in the out-of-home and media sectors positions us to unlock that power and value for our clients and investors. We are thankful for the support of Searchlight and BCI and are confident that this marks the start of an exciting next chapter for our business, employees and local partners.”

Searchlight was advised by Barclays and Latham & Watkins. Weil, Gotshal & Manges served as separate legal counsel to BCI. Adams Outdoor Advertising was advised by PJ SOLOMON and Kaplan, Strangis and Kaplan.

About Searchlight Capital Partners, L.P.

Searchlight is a global private investment firm with nearly $9 billion in assets under management and offices in New York, London and Toronto. Searchlight seeks to invest in businesses where its long-term capital and strategic support accelerate value creation for all stakeholders. For more information, please visit

About Adams Outdoor Advertising

Adams Outdoor Advertising (“Adams”) is a privately owned company offering out-of-home and online media solutions. Adams offers unique and award-winning creative, audience-based multi-media sales expertise, and a people-first approach to client service. Adams boldly proclaims its mission of reinventing the medium known as outdoor by proving it to be more relevant and powerful than anyone has yet to imagine. By maintaining strong member relations with industry leaders such as Geopath and the OAAA, Adams employs data-driven media proficiency that raises the standard for out-of-home.

About BCI

With C$199.6 billion of assets under management as of March 31, 2021, British Columbia Investment Management Corporation (BCI) is one of Canada’s largest institutional investors. Based in Victoria, British Columbia, BCI is a long-term investor that invests across a range of asset classes: fixed income; public equities; private equity; infrastructure; renewable resources; real estate; and commercial mortgages. BCI’s clients include public sector pension plans, insurance, and special purpose funds. BCI’s private equity program, with C$20.7 billion of assets under management, has a well-diversified portfolio comprised of direct and fund investments. The team brings industry expertise with more than 40 investment professionals investing across financial and business services, healthcare, industrials, consumer, and TMT sectors. For more information about BCI, please visit


Searchlight Capital
Prosek Partners

Adams Outdoor Advertising
Michelle McAlpine

Corporate Director of Administration

Ben O’Hara-Byrne

Sr. Manager, External Stakeholder Engagement


About Author

Barb Rogers

Barb has worked within the digital advertising and marketing space for over 20 years. Over the years, she found it difficult to find information on the simplest of subjects tied to the digital marketing space, so she decided to embark on a journey to create a space that others may appreciate.

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