Three investment firms have combined with executives at PVC plastisol maker Rutland Plastic Technologies Inc. to buy the Pineville, N.C.-based company for $30 million.
Roseland, N.J.-based Laud Collier & Co. LLC, HSBC Capital of New York, Stonehenge Partners of Columbus, Ohio, and seven Rutland executives closed the deal Dec. 30. The seller was Canterbury Capital Partners LLC, a New York investment firm. Laud Collier put the deal together, although HSBC holds the largest equity stake.
Rutland makes PVC plastisol compounds and screen-printing inks for numerous commercial and industrial markets, including T-shirts and dip coatings for tool handles and playground equipment. The firm posted 2004 sales of $40 million. Between 2001 and 2004, Rutland's sales grew almost 40 percent.
The company employs 115 at an 80,000-square-foot site. The new ownership arrangement gives Rutland opportunities to continue to grow, according to Chief Financial Officer Fred Shackelford, one of the seven executives who now own a piece of the company.
The management investment group also includes Michael Vaden, president and chief executive officer.
Last year, Rutland bought half of Innovative Printing Technologies, a Miami-based distribution business. That deal gave Rutland company stores selling screen-printing supplies in Miami and Charlotte, N.C., along with one store Rutland already operated in Columbus. Shackelford said more stores may be added this year as well.
Laud Collier partner Paul Laud said his firm will continue to look for acquisitions in the plastics market, as well as in areas such as high-value distribution and business services.
``We like this space a lot,'' Laud said of the plastics market. ``It's a very dynamic sector that shows real growth. There's still a lot of material substitution going on and the industry remains fairly fragmented, even though it's been consolidating for the last 15 years.''
Patrick Turner, Canterbury managing partner, said his firm typically owns its holdings for three to four years before looking to sell them. Canterbury owns one other plastics-related firm, but Turner declined to identify that company.
He added that the plastics market is not a focus for Canterbury, since few plastics firms have the type of brand identity that Canterbury is looking for in its investments.
The purchase was the first original deal for Laud Collier, which was founded in 2002 by former CIT Group Financing Inc. executives Laud and Colby Collier. Starting in 1990, Laud and Collier began assembling CIT's private equity portfolio of 40 companies, including 10 in the plastics market.
CIT's plastics holdings included stakes in injection molder Berry Plastics Corp. of Evansville, Ind.; plastic film distributor Elkay Plastics Co. Inc. of Los Angeles; and film extruders Exopack Film & Packaging LLC of Spartanburg, S.C., and Flexsol Packaging Corp. of Pompano Beach, Fla. Laud Collier helped CIT sell off the last of its private equity holdings last year.