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M. Holland adding sales staff to expand engineering resins focus

By: Frank Esposito

June 5, 2014

Resin distributor M. Holland Co. will increase the size of its sales force by the end of the year to help grow its sales of engineering resins as well as commodity resins.

“We’re increasing the size of our staff and filling out in several regions,” owner Ed Holland said in a June 3 phone interview. “We’ve been well-known as a commodity business for 60-plus years, but now we want people who wake up thinking about long-term programs on all prime branded resins, both engineering resins and commodities.”

Ed Holland declined to provide specifics on hiring, but he added that the Northbrook, Ill.-based firm wants to boost sales of nylon, polycarbonate, ABS and other engineering resins and alloys.

M. Holland also has made improvements to its internal operating systems in order to make the firm more efficient and effective. The changes will allow the firm to grow its sales faster than its overhead, Ed Holland said, while also providing more scalability.

M. Holland made its first-ever acquisition in December 2012 when it purchased resin distributor Christler Chemical & Plastics Inc. of Wilsonville, Ore. M. Holland “still has a very active M&A team,” Ed Holland said, and has been presented with several other acquisition opportunities.

“We just don’t want to get bigger, we want to find the right fit,” Ed Holland said. “Because when you sign on that dotted line (and make an acquisition), it’s the beginning of the process, not the end.”

Through April, U.S./Canadian sales of low density and linear low density polyethylene to distributors were up, according to the American Chemistry Council in Washington, while sales of high density PE and solid PS each were down. Ed Holland said his firm has seen growth in LDPE and LLDPE so far in 2014, and has bucked industry trends by also seeing growth in HDPE and solid PS.

“We’re going to continue to reinvest in this business,” he said. “We’ve got significant growth plans for 2015 through 2018.”

M. Holland ranks as one of North America’s four largest resin distributors, handling resins and compounds from more than 20 suppliers.