After a January 1999 merger that created TownsendTarnell Inc., the company has divided itself into three companies, and now plans more acquisitions. TownsendTarnell — the product of the merger between Houston's Phillip Townsend Associates Inc. and Tarnell Inc. of Providence R.I. — split itself into TownsendTarnell.com Inc., Phillip Townsend Associates Inc. and BRG Townsend Inc.
Shari Gangestad, global marketing director for PTAI, said during the merger the parties intended to pool each firm's resources then separate them for a clearer focus.
"It ended up that the best way was to make three companies," Gangestad said.
She added that the group's "Plastic Market Monthly" newsletter will remain largely unchanged, except that it will try to create a more global base with the addition of panelists from Europe. It also will be offered online, in addition to its traditional print medium, by TownsendTarnell.com.
Simultaneous with TownsendTarnell's restructuring, Business Research Group Ltd. of London merged with one of the three sections to form BRG Townsend, based in Mount Olive, N.J.
Tom Galvanek, president of BRG Townsend, said the restructuring creates distinctions between TownsendTarnell's commodity and performance services.
"It lets them each focus on their specific areas instead of being all things to all people," Gangestad said.
TownsendTarnell.com, based in Houston, is an Internet firm whose "focus is to be a provider of management support and services," according to Galvanek. It takes advantage of the databases, credit services and customer relationship management modules that were key attractions for the original companies to merge in 1999.
PTAI emerges similar to the original company of the same name that entered the merger. It still focuses on consulting in the chemical and polymers industry, Gangestad said. PTAI deals primarily with volume plastics, benchmarking and metrics businesses, and it is devoted more to customer service as opposed to TownsendTarnell.com's focus on commodity products.
Finally, BRG Townsend is the "global specialties consulting arm of the company," Galvanek said.
Although the three have been separate firms since April, they anticipate a close relationship.
"We'll work together because the ownership at this time is similar, but they are all separate companies with separate boards," Gangestad said.
As the companies finish details from the restructuring, such as updating their Web sites, they also are looking at more mergers and acquisitions for further expansion.
Gangestad said PTAI currently is looking into a possible deal, but she did not disclose details. She added that PTAI also wants to strengthen its global stance.
Galvanek said BRG Townsend recently formed a joint association with KeyMark LLC, an image-processing solution provider serving customers such as FedEx, Amtrec and Norrell Corp. With this joint venture, BRG Townsend gained a foothold in the film industry with KeyMark's specialty in oxygen absorbers.
Galvanek said the company also acquired Information Research Ltd., a leading provider for coatings information. BRG's subsidiary, IAL Consultants, also did some work with coatings firms.
"The combination of the two gives us a world leadership position," Galvanek said. "Our focus is to grow globally and strive to be the best provider of global consulting services."