Penda Corp. will continue its aggressive acquisition program under new owners. The Portage, Wis., producer of truck bedliners and other truck accessories will focus on companies that complement its core businesses, Penda President and Chief Executive Officer Jack Thompson said by telephone. He would not confirm whether it is currently in negotiations.
Penda announced March 29 that an investment and management group agreed to buy the company. The investment firms are William Blair Capital Partners of Chicago, Wind Point Partners of Southfield, Mich., and Norwest Equity Partners of Minneapolis. Thompson did not detail how much of Penda each will own. Terms of the deal, expected to close within 30 days, were not disclosed. Bear Stearns & Co. Inc. of New York is Penda's financial adviser in the deal.
Penda is now owned by Trivest Inc. of Miami and Brenson Partners of Chicago. Thompson said the investment firms have owned Penda for several years and decided "to monetize their investment."
Penda claims to be the largest producer of pickup truck bedliners for original equipment manufacturers and aftermarkets. It also makes a range of truck accessories, such as soft and hard tonneau covers, step boards, tie-downs and bed mats. Thompson said Penda's 1999 sales were about $96 million.
It is a major thermoformer of truck parts, recording $68 million in thermoformed product sales in 1998.
Penda entered fiberglass truck products in late 1998 when it bought the bedliner and vinyl tonneau cover assets of Custom Form Manufacturing Inc. and its Elkhart, Ind., plant. It expanded in fiberglass a year later when it acquired the Glasstite pickup truck topper business from Raven Industries Inc. Glasstite's plants are in Dunnell, Minn., and Eloy, Ariz. Penda does its thermoforming in Portage and in Daleville, Ala.
Thompson said Penda's current management team will remain in place. He claims Penda had the largest market share of bedliners last year and with the new owners' resources "we expect to take leadership positions in the other truck accessory categories as well."
Wind Point Partners owns thermoformer and thermoforming machine producer Alloyd Co. Inc. of De Kalb, Ill.
Trivest's plastics holdings include recently formed film producer Plassein Packaging Corp. of Hartford, Conn., film extruder and injection molder Atlantis Plastics Inc. of Atlanta, plastisol producer Rutland Plastics of Pineville, N.C., and cutlery maker Jet Plastica Industries Inc. of Hatfield, Pa.