Private equity firm Riverside Co. of Cleveland has been an active player in the plastics market, taking part in three deals in less than a year.
Riverside's first plastics-related deal took place in September, when it bought overhead door maker European Panel Co. SA (EPCO) of Belgium. EPCO makes sandwich panels — metal skins around polyurethane foam — for residential, commercial and industrial overhead doors.
Riverside followed that deal in January when it acquired Xcentric Mold & Engineering, a high-tech injection molder and mold maker in Clinton Township, Mich.
Then in June, it was on the sell side, when it sold plastisol compounds and inks maker Rutland Holding Co. of Pineville, N.C., to PolyOne Corp., the North American compounding leader based in Avon Lake, Ohio.
Riverside partner Tim Gosline was involved with the sale of Rutland. Riverside had owned Rutland since 2013 and had made substantial investments into the firm.
"We saw that [Rutland] was a leader in plastisol inks, and we focused more on what they could do from an operating perspective," Gosline said in a June 26 phone interview. "We also looked at management and new product development."
Riverside has been involved in numerous plastics acquisitions and sales over the years and is active in many other industries as well. It typically holds on to an asset for 3-5 years before looking for a buyer.
Riverside's current plastics holdings include PVC window maker Sunrise Windows of Temperance, Mich. Gosline said Riverside is in the process of making an add-on acquisition to Sunrise.
"There's still a good future in plastics," he said. "It's a huge and dynamic market. We're focused on finding the right companies to support and to grow."