High-barrier film specialist Advanced Barrier Extrusions LLC is expanding its capabilities into printing and decorating with the purchase of Flexographic Packaging Co.
Both companies are based in Wisconsin. Terms were not disclosed.
"We're excited about it," Larry Goldstein, ABX interim president, said in a telephone interview. "I like deals that make good industrial logic. We make high-barrier, standard and breathable nine- and 11-layer cast film. It's something the company is really good at. But we did not offer any decorating capabilities."
Rhinelander-based ABX has previously partnered with Waupun-based Flexographic on projects that combined the two firms' specialties. Now it will be able to coordinate projects that combine ABX's cast films with Flexographic's printing and laminating.
"We've already seen customer wins in the marketplace," Goldstein said.
ABX was founded in 2006. Newtown Square, Pa.-based private investment firm Graham Partners combined with existing management to buy ABX in August 2018. ABX makes coextruded films used in food and medical applications. Products include multilayer forming webs, vertical and pouch rollstock and specialty films.
Flexographic was founded in 1995. Its services include high-speed, wide-web flexographic printing and custom laminating. Goldstein said ABX acquired Flexographic from the founder, who chose to retire.
The addition of FPC makes ABX one of the few midsized technical high-barrier cast film providers with printing and laminating capabilities, according to Graham Partners. The deal will help ABX capitalize on consumer trends including a shift in preference toward clean labels, increased spending on fresh foods and heightened focus on food safety, Graham Partners said in a news release.
"Our original investment thesis in ABX was premised on adding capabilities to build a full-service flexible packaging provider. We are excited to have taken a major step toward this goal a year into our partnership with ABX," Steven Graham, CEO of Graham Partners, said in the release.
Graham targets companies with earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization of between $5 million and $50 million, with EBITDA margins of 10 percent or greater. It has closed on more than 120 acquisitions, joint ventures, financings and divestitures since it was founded in 1988.
Goldstein said the purchase of Flexographic Packaging was consistent with Graham Partners' operating strategy to invest in companies and add complementary capabilities. He added that Graham is always evaluating potential add-on acquisitions.