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Apollo Global Management & The History of Sundance Spas - Part 1

In 1979, the spa and hot tub industry changed forever when three young men developed an innovative spa/hot tub that delivered superior quality and performance.

Starting from a garage in Costa Mesa, California, Jim Clark and his two sons, Ron and Chuck formed a business around the emerging market for plastics. Originally manufacturing accessories for the automotive industry, in 1979 the Clarks turned to the portable hot tub business, creating an innovative spa tub that delivered superior quality and performance. This marked the birth of Sundance Spas.

Now internationally recognized for superior design, Sundance Spas has grown to become the largest manufacturer and distributor of the most technologically advanced acrylic spas/hot tubs in the world.

Ever since their humble beginning in 1979, Sundance Spas has worked tirelessly to perfect the hot tub hydrotherapy experience. Sundance Spas is devoted to improving health and lifestyles through its hydrotherapy benefits, including stress relief, health restoration and the creation of an environment for balanced living.

In 1998, Appolo Global Management LLC, an American private equity firm which was founded in 1990 by former Drexel Burnham Lambert banker Leon Black, purchased Sundance Spas from Clark Manufacturing to usher in a new period of innovation and growth.

Sundance Spas portable hot tubs and comprehensive line of backyard accessories are now available through over 750 specialty retail locations and in more than 70 countries worldwide.

History Of Sundance Spas

In 1993, Sundance Spas attained success through the aggressive launch of an international sales program that added record numbers of retail locations around the world. In 1998, Sundance Spas became a part of Jacuzzi Group Worldwide family of companies owned by the Apollo Management Group. Today, Sundance Spas has grown to become a manufacturer of among the most technologically advanced and highest quality acrylic spas & hot tubs in the world.

Sundance Spas leads the industry in the design and development of acrylic spa shells, heating and filtration systems, water purification, and programming/control systems. Recent innovations ensure that Sundance spa systems are as efficient as they are powerful, and no other spa manufacturer can match Sundance Spas’ track record for introducing new technologies in hydrotherapy. In fact, the Association of Pool & Spa Professionals has honored Sundance Spas with its prestigious John Holcomb Silver Award for technical contributions to the spa industry.

In October 2006, the Apollo Management Group, which owns Sundance Spas, announced a $990 million leveraged buyout of Jacuzzi Brands. 

In 2008 Apollo Management Group moved Jacuzzi world headquarters to The Shoppes at Chino Hills, California where they started building Jacuzzi hot tubs in the existing state of the art Sundance Spas manufacturing facility.

In May 2012, Jacuzzi Group Worldwide, (Apollo Management Group's hot tub department) acquired the assets of ThermoSpas, a Wallingford, Connecticut-based manufacturer of spas and hot tubs.

In February 2013 the Jacuzzi Group acquired Dimension One spas to add to their potfolio of hot tub manufacturers.

In 2017, Jacuzzi LLC acquired Hydropool Hot Tubs and Swim Spas, and BathWraps (bath and shower Liners), taking the number of hot tub, jacuzzi and portable spa companies owned by Apollo Management to five (Sundance, Jacuzzi, ThermoSpas, Dimension One & Hydropool)

Sundance Spas is the elite brand owned by the Apollo Management Group, and has been the hot tub brand of choice of discerning customers for many years. 

The Apollo Management Group owns a vast array of companies including AMC, MGM, Century 21, Caldwell banker, Norwegian Crusie Line, Linens 'N things, Claire's, Great Wolf Resorts, Hostess (the maker of Twinkies) and the Caesers Entertainent Corp, which includes Caesers Palace, Chucky Cheese and many, many more.

Come back next week for part two of our history of Sundance Spas - we will highlight the numerous industry firsts and technological breakthroughs developed by Sundance over the years, they have more industry firsts than any other hot tub, spa or jacuzzi manufacturer in the world.