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Pregis buys protective film maker Surface Guard

By:

May 2, 2013

DEERFEILD, ILL. — Protective packaging manufacturer Pregis Corp. has purchased Surface Guard Inc., expanding its portfolio to include new protective film, cohesive material and single-face corrugated manufacturing capabilities.

Surface Guard will operate as a division of Deerfield, Ill.,-based Pregis.

Pregis will continue to operate Surface Guard’s two facilities in its hometown of Aurora, Ill. Surface Guard’s founders James Heimann, Patrick Dillon and Steve Malinowski, as well as the company’s 79 employees, will join Pregis’s 2,000-member workforce.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Pregis has been looking at Surface Guard for awhile.

“It’s a good add-on, bolt-on business for us; it’s run very, very well,” said Kevin Baudhuin, president and CEO of Pregis, by phone.

“It’s not a business that needs to be fixed or needs a heavy investment in capital, it’s a business we can grow together,” he said.

Surface Guard makes protective polyethylene and polypropylene films and packaging from cohesive paper, linerboard, corrugated, wave flute and poly paper materials.

The company specializes in innovative, R&D-heavy products, like water-based adhesive coated film, and in developing custom packaging, Baudhin said.

Films make up about 60 percent of Surface Guard’s revenue and corrugated packaging makes up about 10 percent, he said.

The two companies combined product portfolio will reach target markets including automotive, fulfillment, building products, appliances, furniture pharmaceuticals and aerospace.

The companies’ corrugated packaging offerings will also meet high-end retail and consumer packaging requirements.

“We want to take advantage of the product, the customer focus and the market innovations,” Baudhin said.

This is Pregis’s third acquisition in as many years.

Most recently, Pregis acquired foam extruder Inter-Pac Inc. According to Pregis, the deal, completed in August 2012, made them the largest producer of polyethylene foam sheet in the U.S.

Pregis also divested several non-core businesses last year — Kobusch-Sengewald, Hexacomb and Ambassador Packaging.

The company is always looking for new opportunities, but “we’re very calculated. We’re making sure it’s the right people and the right technology; that it’s the right add-on with existing business channels and end users,” Baudhin said.

Pregis operates more than 27 facilities in 10 countries throughout North America and Europe.

The company has estimated annual North American film and sheet sales of $200 million, according to the most recent Plastics News survey of the industry.