Newsletter

Mason Wells Newsletter - 3rd Quarter 2010

In This Issue:
• Mason Wells Acquires Appleton Performance Packaging
• Mason Wells Looking to Buy Before Year End

Portfolio Company Updates:
• Coating Excellence International, LLC
• HK Systems, Inc.
• Oliver-Tolas Healthcare Packaging
• Prime Distribution Services, Inc.
 

Mason Wells Acquires Appleton Performance Packaging
 


Mason Wells recently announced that it has closed on the acquisition of Appleton Performance Packaging from Appleton Papers, Inc. The business will be renamed NEX Performance Films, Inc. and will be owned by Mason Wells, current management, and other co-investors.

NEX Performance Films is a leading provider of high-quality polyethylene films. The company supplies converters with a broad array of products, from monolayer to high barrier films for the food, foodservice, pet food, industrial, and medical markets.

Mason Wells is pleased to be partnering with NEX’s management team to support the company’s growth initiatives. The company’s skilled workforce, technical film capabilities, sales organization, state-of-the-art equipment, and experienced management team are all factors that have allowed the company to consistently meet the expectations of its customers. The company provides an excellent platform for growth and is well-positioned to capitalize on a number of market and new product opportunities. Mason Wells intends to support NEX as an independent specialty film supplier and will be investing in new and upgraded capacity to support the company’s growth plans.

“Mason Wells shares our vision of becoming the leading independent supplier of blown polyethylene film to converters, and they are prepared to immediately invest in our film business,” said Kathy Bolhous, President and CEO of NEX Performance Films. “They have a great track record of enhancing their portfolio companies, and with their strong financial backing and network of resources, we look forward to continuing to serve our customers with innovative, highquality film solutions.”
 

Mason Wells Looking to Buy Before Year End
 

We get the impression that everyone wants to sell by year end. The increases in the tax rates that seem likely to take effect in 2011 are motivating many business owners to sell their companies in 2010, particularly private equity firms. If you are feeling the pressure to move quickly, please contact Mason Wells because we are prepared to get deals done before December 31st.

We recently closed on Mason Wells Buyout Fund III, a $525 million equity fund raised to make control-oriented buyout investments within the Investment Criteria shown on the back side.

With nearly 30 years of transaction experience, we know the types of deals we are looking for, have experienced deal teams ready to act, and are prepared to move quickly without financing contingencies if necessary.

We will work on a confidential basis without the need for a prepared offering memorandum. We will meet privately with you to review financial information and assess the opportunity. We understand the current market prices and intend to pay fair prices for good companies. We will work quickly with owners and managers to construct a deal that works for all parties. We are a cash buyer with the ability to move quickly and close according to your time frame.

Please contact us if you have a situation where we might help.
 

Portfolio Company Updates
 


Coating Excellence International, LLC (CEI), headquartered in Wrightstown, WI, recently opened a new plant in Hebron, KY. CEI anticipates that the Hebron plant will ultimately create 100 jobs for the local economy. The new facility includes an additional 120,000 square feet of production space. The opening of CEI’s plant in Hebron, near the Cincinnati metropolitan area, is another reinforcement of the company’s commitment to strong customer relations. Mike Nowak, CEI President, stated, “To work with a company that has a large share of your business but doesn’t have multiple sites in case of disruption might cause customers to worry. Hebron really gives our customers a sense of security that we have backup manufacturing processes.”

CEI has a fairly large customer base in the Southeast and the Hebron plant provides a strategic location for serving that area, and continuing growth in fl exible packaging. Preplanning which operations would be at each facility helped ease the transition in dividing manufacturing capabilities. 

When the second plant opened in spring, it began bearing fruit for CEI almost immediately as Hebron exceeded one million SuperTube bags per month just months after the facility opened.

On September 16th, HK Systems, Inc. announced that it had been acquired by Luxembourg- based Dematic Group, which has annual revenue of approximately US$1 billion. HK Systems was an M&I Capital Markets Group, Inc. portfolio company, the predecessor of Mason Wells, Inc. The newly combined company will be called Dematic, with its North American headquarters in Grand Rapids, MI.

HK Systems’ operations in New Berlin, WI are expected to remain intact. HK Systems has about 1,000 employees overall, including 250 in New Berlin. The company has annual revenue in excess of $250 million.


Oliver-Tolas Healthcare Packaging management personnel were featured at several speaking engagements. Jane Severin, Oliver-Tolas’ Director of Technology, was a presenter at the DuPont Congress in Copenhagen in June. John Merritt, International Managing Director, was a guest speaker at MEDTEC China in Shanghai in August. 


Prime Distribution Services, Inc. (PDS), a leading non-asset-based provider of multi vendor consolidation services, warehousing, and transportation management for the retail end market, was recently honored by Food Logistics Magazine as one of the Top 85 3PLs in 2010. PDS was chosen based upon its ability to significantly reduce transportation costs, optimize warehousing operations, and improve the service levels for its customers in the non-perishable food industry.

PDS has a national presence, operating four facilities located near Indianapolis, IN; Mesquite, TX; Stockton, CA; and Atlanta, GA.

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