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Filtration Group buys Porex

By: Frank Esposito

December 10, 2013

Filtration Group Corp. has acquired porous polymers and plastics maker Porex Corp. for an undisclosed price.

Porex makes materials that are used in a broad range of filtering and venting applications in packaging, automotive, medical, bioscience and other markets. The firm employs 700 and operates manufacturing plants at its Fairburn headquarters site, as well as in Germany, Scotland and Malaysia.

Chicago-based Filtration is a global leader in cleaning air and reducing carbon emissions. The firm operates plants in 20 countries worldwide.

Filtration is owned by private equity firm Madison Capital Partners of Chicago. Porex is being sold by Los Angeles private equity firm Aurora Capital Group. Officials said in a news release that under Aurora’s ownership, Porex made several strategic acquisitions and divestitures, including the sale of its surgical division.

Porex was founded in 1961 by research scientist Bob Dickey. The firm initially made sheet material out of various polymers for use in a caustic fluid separation process.

Investment firm Robert W. Baird & Co. of Milwaukee served as financial advisor to Porex on the sale.

Earlier this year, Porex began making fluoropolymer-based sheet in the U.S. The firm previously had made the product only in Europe. The materials are designed to reduce healthcare-associated infections.

Aurora had owned Porex since 2009, when it purchased the business from HLTH Corp. for $142 million.