Compounders Aurora Plastics LLC and Enviroplas Inc. have merged to create a larger company with a broader product offering.
Officials with Aurora in Streetsboro, Ohio, and with Enviroplas in Evansville, Ind., said that both firms "share a commitment to being their customers' first choice … and can now offer customers a broader product portfolio backed by industry-leading customer service."
"Enviroplas brings an exciting platform expansion in near-product adjacency," Aurora CEO Darrell Hughes added.
Enviroplas CEO and founder Jim Stratman will remain a substantial shareholder and continue to lead growth as president of Enviroplas, which will be Aurora's engineered polymers business unit, reporting to Hughes. Enviroplas' leadership team and employee base will continue in their current roles.
"We completed extensive research of the market and growth opportunities prior to initiating this merger," Hughes said in a news release. "Jim [Stratman] and his leadership team have dramatically accelerated the company's growth by leveraging their deep industry knowledge, operating rigor and results focus."
Enviroplas was founded in 1992. The firm operates out of two sites in Evansville.
"There are tremendous cultural similarities between Aurora Plastics and Enviroplas," Stratman said. "Most important of these is the focus on customer intimacy and partnership, enabling the continued growth of Aurora's engineered compounds and vinyl specialties businesses."
The combined company offers a broad range of custom compounding capabilities and technologies, including:
• Engineered polymers: polycarbonate, ABS, thermoplastic polyurethane, copolyester, copolyester/PC, polyetherimide, polybutylene terephthalate, methyl methacrylate-acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene, polysulfone and blends of PC with ABS, PBT, acrylonitrile styrene acrylate (ASA), styrene acrylonitrile (SAN) and PET.
• PVC compounds: rigid PVC powder and pellet; chlorinated PVC, flexible PVC pellets; clear, opaque, and colored flexible PVC; rigid cellular PVC; and PVC/acrylic alloys.
• Thermoplastic elastomers: styrene-butadiene-styrene (SBS) and styrene-ethylene/butylene-styrene (SEBS) block copolymers; thermoplastic polyolefins and chlorinated polyethylene alloys (CPE).
• Other specialty compounds: custom TPOs, low-smoke zero-halogen compounds (LSOH), flame retardant concentrates, and purge compounds.
In August, Aurora broke ground on a 20,000-square-foot expansion in Streetsboro. The expansion will allow the firm to install a new blending line that will increase the site's annual production capacity by 100 million pounds. It is set to be completed by the end of 2023. The project will create 30 new jobs at the site, which now employs about 80.
In addition to Streetsboro, Aurora has manufacturing plants in North Carolina, Quebec, Massachusetts and Texas. Major end markets for Aurora include siding, deck and rail, window and door, recreational, automotive, wire and cable, battery and footwear. The firm primarily compounds PVC, but also makes compounds based on thermoplastic elastomers (TPEs).
Aurora has been majority owned since August 2021 by investment firm Nautic Partners of Providence, R.I. Prior to Nautic, Chicago-based Wind Point Partners had been majority owner of Aurora since 2016, in partnership with company management and the Ontario Teachers Pension Plan. Aurora made four acquisitions while owned by Wind Point, most recently buying Elastocon TPE Technologies of Springfield, Ill., in early 2019.
Nautic has been an active plastics investor in recent years, most recently acquiring plastic plumbing products distributor Commercial Industrial Supply of Rock Hill, S.C., earlier this year. Nautic made that purchase through Harrington Industrial Plastics of Chino, Calif., which it acquired in 2020. In mid-2020, Nautic used Harrington to buy Aetna Plastics of Valley View, Ohio.
Nautic is a middle-market private equity firm that focuses on health care, industrials, and services. The firm has completed more than 140 platform transactions in its more than 35-year history. P&M Corporate Finance served as a financial adviser to Enviroplas.