Thermoplastic sheet extruder Allen Extruders Inc. in Holland, Mich., now is a subsidiary of Sekisui America Corp., the Mount Laurel, N.J., parent company of niche sheet extruder Kleerdex Co. LLC.
The transaction closed April 12.
Allen Extruders, started by the Angell family in 1970, specializes in sheet extrusion for plastics like high-impact polystyrene, ABS and weatherable materials. It operates one facility in Holland with about 85 employees, and is largely focused on customers in the Midwest.
Sekisui America is the North American operating unit of publicly held Sekisui Chemical Co. Ltd. of Osaka, Japan.
Dale Angell founded Allen Extruders, which sons Mike and Sam Angell then operated. Sam will retire and Mike will stay as general manager. Officials from Kleerdex also will take positions heading Allen. Kleerdex President Jim Medalie also will be president of Allen Extruders; Jim Lynn, vice president of finance with Kleerdex, will be Alllen's executive vice president.
``We will invest in both companies over the next few years to make sure they have the necessary tools to grow,'' Medalie said in an April 20 e-mail.
``We want to make sure that we stay ahead of the curve with capacity and technology,'' he said. As such, both Kleerdex and Allen will invest in capacity.
``The family made many investments in the company over the years. In order to increase capacity and improve technology, they would have had to make investments that were even more significant. They evaluated their options and decided Sekisui/Kleerdex was better prepared and able to make those investments,'' Medalie said.
As a second-generation family-operated company, the firm needed a plan to continue to compete in a volatile world environment, Mike Angell said.
``We're excited to be part of an international company like them,'' he said in a telephone interview. ``They are a great company to be aligned with.''
Angell emphasized during Allen's search for a buyer that it wanted to ensure the company culture would be preserved.
``We're very committed to our employees,'' he said. ``We have a lot of long-term employees. We wanted to try to preserve that. We wanted to get someone who was interested not only in preserving that but building on it.''
Allen and Kleerdex are extremely complementary businesses, said Bill Ridenour, president of Polymer Transactions Inc. in Newbury, Ohio. Ridenour's firm served as financial adviser to Kleerdex.
``They will be able to introduce each other's products to each other's customers,'' Ridenour said. ``They'll be able to cross-market products.''
Although Ridenour would not disclose terms of the deal, he said it was a competitive selling process.
``There were other interested parties, that much I can say,'' he said. ``The product lines are very complementary, but with the management team, the style of business is similar and they get along very, very well. They do business in the same way. It's going to be a nice fit. The management teams both wanted to have this deal happen. There's no doubt about it. I've hardly ever seen a fit this good from management standpoint.''
The two companies will complement each other regionally as well. Bloomsburg, Pa.-based Kleerdex has a presence on each of the coasts, Mike Angell said. It also participates in markets where Allen does not yet exist. Kleerdex's end markets include aircraft interiors, mass transit, equipment houses, protective wall coverings, and clean room walls and ceilings.
Allen Extruders reported $42 million in sales in Plastics News' most recent ranking of film and sheet manufacturers.