New owners of flexible packaging firm Duralam Inc. expect to get a better reception than the previous proprietors when they knock on the doors of Wisconsin's cheese producers. Cheese and food producer Sargento Inc. of Plymouth, Wis., recently sold Duralam to a management group. Duralam vice president of sales Daniel Baird said the buyout puts Duralam in a ``neutral relationship'' with other cheese firms, some of which were reluctant to buy Duralam packaging ``because of the Sargento connection.''
Sargento sold Appleton, Wis.-based Duralam on Feb. 5 for undisclosed terms to focus on its food business, Louis Gen-tine, Sargento's chief executive officer, said in a news release. Sargento, owned privately by the Gentine family, plans to continue sourcing its packaging from Duralam, which it ac-quired in 1978.
Baird said Duralam supplies packaging to producers of cheese, processed meat and confectionery items. It makes much of its polyethylene film on a 31/2-inch extruder, but buys PET, polypropylene, nylon, ion-omer and other films to make laminations. Its downstream operations include printing and pouch production. Baird said its annual sales exceed $35 million. It employs about 180 in the 130,000-square-foot Appleton facility.
Duralam President Marvin Schneider led the buyout team, which included Baird; Jeffrey Lammers, vice president of administration; and Paul Schwemin, vice president of manufacturing. M&I Ventures Corp. of Milwaukee holds equity in Duralam, as does the State of Wisconsin Investment Board and Robert W. Baird & Co.
Harris Trust & Savings Bank provided the senior credit.
Baird did not disclose the level of interest in Duralam held by the management group or the other owners.