Sussex IM buys cosmetic-compact business

By Jim Johnson
Senior Staff Reporter

Published: September 5, 2013 4:12 pm ET
Updated: September 5, 2013 4:16 pm ET

Related to this story

Topics Packaging, Consumer Products, Mergers & Acquisitions, Injection Molding, Injection molds
Companies & Associations Rexam PLC

Sussex IM’s buyout of Albea Group’s North American cosmetic-compact business is nothing short of a rebirth, the company’s president and founder says.

And Keith Everson expects to see a pretty substantial growth spurt now that the injection molder is in full control of that line of business.

The Sussex, Wis.-based company has been acting as a contract manufacturer, first for Rexam plc, and later for Albea Group, making millions of compacts each year since 2009.

But when Rexam sold that business to Albea at the end of last year, the deal triggered a contractual clause that allowed the two sides to re-examine the relationship.

Sussex made it clear it wanted to stand independently and worked for months to finalize a deal with Albea to acquire the compact business, Everson said.

“We made the decision that we wanted to go out on our own. And that’s where the offer to buy came up and we were able to close the deal,” he said. “Now we’re going to be able to work directly with the cosmetic firms again because everything else was filtered through Rexam or Albea.

“We’re one of the premier compact manufacturers left in the United States. A lot of that business has gone overseas or companies just went out of business. I’ve been calling on the cosmetic industry for 33 years. And when I started off in this area, there were probably 12 compact makers in the United States. Today there are two or three,” he said.

“How we have been able to stay in this business is the automation. We build our own automation, take the labor out of the formula and then we’re competitive globally,” Everson said.

The company’s customers include such well-known names as Elizabeth Arden, L’Oreal, Mary Kay, Neutrogena and Revlon.

About 15 percent of the company’s $70 million-per-year business currently comes from cosmetic compacts, but Everson sees that percentage doubling. The company employs 400 workers and the president does not see the deal affecting staffing levels.

“We’re going to be a lot more nimble and quick to respond. We don’t have as many hoops to jump through as other companies, bigger organizations, do,” Everson said.

Former Sussex IM owner Rexam approached Everson with the idea of a management buyout amid a downturn in the global economy in 2009. As part of that deal, the two sides agreed to a five-year supply arrangement.

When Albea acquired Rexam’s cosmetics, toiletries and household-care business, that opened the window to reexamine the business relationship, Everson said. Terms of the deal were not disclosed by the privately held company.

“Everybody’s excited here. We’re hearing from customers, they’re excited that they are dealing with us direct again, so it’s kind of like a new birth. It’s a rebirth,” the company president said.

Sussex IM also reacquired its innovation center, which had been located in Wisconsin but was moved to the Chicago area by Rexam in 2009 as a result of the management buyout.

That facility, at least for the cosmetics industry, sat idle for four years, Everson said.

“It’s a really neat area. It’s a place in our facility that’s designed for innovation, very flexible, very open,” he said. “And we’re now getting that back up and running and bringing in customers and showing them new, creative ideas.”


Comments

Sussex IM buys cosmetic-compact business

By Jim Johnson
Senior Staff Reporter

Published: September 5, 2013 4:12 pm ET
Updated: September 5, 2013 4:16 pm ET

Post Your Comments


Back to story


More stories

Image

Investment firm buys Ontario cap molder

October 23, 2014 2:01 pm ET

A company whose varied interests include food and refrigerated transportation businesses is now moving into plastic caps.    More

Image

Bemis reports record quarterly profit

October 23, 2014 1:06 pm ET

Bemis Company Inc. saw record per-share earnings from continuing operations during the third quarter, but charges associated with the divestiture of...    More

Image

Packaging specialist Amcor hits sustainability goals ahead of schedule

October 23, 2014 11:15 am ET

Global packaging company Amcor Ltd. has achieved its waste reduction goals two years ahead of schedule, according to the company's new sustainability ...    More

Image

Report: Private equity companies may seek to buy Bayer MaterialScience

October 23, 2014 10:56 am ET

A number of investment groups are reported to be interested buying Bayer AG's MaterialScience operation, valued at around 10 billion euros ($12.6...    More

Image

Simple lightweighting in packaging, caps not so simple anymore

October 22, 2014 4:16 pm ET

The days of finding simple ways to remove additional weight — and costs — from plastic bottles are over, according to one expert.    More

Market Reports

Plastics Recycling Trends in North America

This report is a review and analysis of the North American Plastics Recycling Industry, including key trends and statistics based on 2013 performance. We examine market environment factors, regulatory issues, industry challenges, key drivers and emerging trends in post-consumer and post-industrial recycling.

Learn more

Plastics in Mexico - State of the Industry Report

This report analyzes the $20 million dollar plastics industry in Mexico including sales of machinery & equipment, resins and finished products.

Our analysts provide insight on business trends, foreign investment, top end markets and plastics processing activity. The report also provides important data on exports, production, employment and value of plastics products manufactured.

Learn more

Plastics Caps & Closures Market Report

The annual recap of top trends and future outlook for the plastics caps & closures market features interviews with industry thought leaders and Bill Wood’s economic forecast of trends in growing end markets. You will also gain insight on trends in caps design, materials, machinery, molds & tooling and reviews of mergers & acquisitions.

Learn more

Upcoming Plastics News Events

January 14, 2015 - January 14, 2015Plastics in Automotive

February 4, 2015 - February 6, 2015Plastics News Executive Forum 2015

June 2, 2015 - June 3, 2015Plastics Financial Summit - Chicago 2015

September 16, 2015 - September 18, 2015Plastics Caps & Closures - September 2015

More Events