The following is a list of certain select portfolio companies that The Anderson Group has exited. While this list is not exhaustive, the following examples are representative of Anderson’s approach to private equity investing.
Advance Stamping, Inc. | Detroit, MI
Advance Stamping was a long time manufacturer of small precision stampings, using transfer press technology, including lipstick cases, bullet shells and the original Zippo cigarette lighter case. The company was undermanaged (the primary managers were the third generation owners), evidenced by deteriorating financial performance. Anderson acquired the company’s assets and implemented a plan that involved augmenting the management team and renewing the marketing strategy in order to reverse the downward trend in performance. The plan was successful, resulting in improved profitability, and the company was eventually sold to a synergistic buyer.
Aerial Wireless Services, LLC | Bellingham, MA
Aerial Wireless Services is a regional provider of wireless communication infrastructure construction and maintenance services. Prior to Anderson’s ownership, Aerial Wireless Services was an underperforming/orphaned division of a leading infrastructure company. Anderson purchased the assets of the division in partnership with its Chief Executive Officer and worked to restructure and grow the operations by building out the management team and investing in/ upgrading the fleet and operating equipment to meet increasing demand. As a result, the business’ revenue and profitability increased significantly and the company was sold to a strategic buyer.
Alliance Food Equipment Holdings, LLC | Northvale, NJ
Alliance, better known as WCB Ice Cream, operated from four locations across the United States, Denmark and Italy and was a leading producer of highly engineered and automated processing and production equipment for the ice cream and frozen snacks industry. Prior to Anderson’s ownership, WCB was a conglomeration of under-performing, separately managed businesses owned by a multibillion dollar corporate parent. Anderson partnered with management to purchase the assets of WCB and worked to integrate/optimize the company’s operation, then to establish WCB as not only a premier global supplier of capital equipment but also replacement parts and service to its international customer base. After successfully organically growing the business for more than ten years, WCB was sold to a strategic acquirer in 2014.
Ashland Products, Inc. | Lowell, IN
Ashland Products was a leading, innovative supplier of injection molded components and assemblies to the fenestration industry. Despite its market position, the company suffered from an ineffective shareholder base and inadequate manufacturing facilities and systems, resulting in operating losses that put the company in default with its senior lender. Anderson acquired the company’s assets from the senior lender, moved the company to a new facility and worked with management to upgrade the operating systems and enhance the product line. The company realized a rapid turnaround and was sold to a strategic acquirer within two years of Anderson’s investment.
ATCO Products, Inc. | Dallas, TX
ATCO Products, a producer of air conditioning components for the automotive aftermarket, was an underperforming company despite its established and well-accepted product line. Anderson acquired the company and worked with management to implement a growth plan that targeted product line extensions and expansion to the original equipment heavy-duty truck market. Sales and profitability grew substantially and the company as eventually sold to a financial buyer.
Automotive Plastic Technologies, Inc. | Sterling Heights, MI
A leading plastic injection molder of decorative interior and exterior components for the automotive industry, APT specialized in large painted and assembled parts. The company had experienced a decline in sales and was operating at a substantial loss. After acquiring the company, Anderson consolidated operations from five to three facilities, invested in equipment to expand operating capabilities and recruited a new management team. Together, Anderson worked with the management team to successfully launch two major programs for General Motors and Chrysler. Within two years of ownership by Anderson, the company was sold to a strategic buyer.
Brinkhoff & Monoson, Inc. | Springfield, MO
Brinkhoff & Monoson, Inc., operating under the name Red Monkey Foods, is a leading producer of premium organic and all-natural spices, seasonings, ingredients and other dry food products. Anderson invested in Red Monkey in partnership with the founder of the company, which at that time was performing but in need of both strategic and financial resources to support considerable growth prospects. Together, Anderson and the founder recruited additional management talent and embarked on a multifaceted business plan that involved construction of a state-of-the-art manufacturing facility, expanding and improving production and quality control capabilities, expanding the supply chain globally, and leading the strategic transition from exclusively spices and seasonings to a more expansive breadth of dry ingredients and related products. Sales and profits grew rapidly and the company was sold to a financial buyer.
Digital Excellence, Inc. | St. Paul, MN
Digital Excellence, Inc., one of the leading producers of audio and video cassettes and discs serving the textbook publishing industry, was an underperforming subsidiary of a corporate parent that had exclusively focused on other subsidiaries. Anderson acquired the company as a divestiture from its parent, eliminated excess administration costs and worked with management to execute on a growth plan that involved product and service line expansion. The company performed well and was eventually sold to a strategic acquirer.
Equality Specialties, Inc | New York, NY
A manufacturer and distributor of decorative packaging materials, Equality was formerly owned by a large corporate parent that did not provide leadership or strategic direction. Anderson employed performance incentives to stimulate motivation and worked with management to expand to the European market (via a complementary acquisition) and increase the company’s offshore production capacity. As a result, Equality’s revenue and profitability increased substantially and the company was sold to a financial buyer.
Hastings Manufacturing, LLC | Hastings, MI
Hastings Manufacturing Company is a leading global manufacturer of piston rings, supplying the industry’s broadest product offering to both OEM and aftermarket customers in more than forty countries. At the time of acquisition, the company was severely distressed and experiencing operating losses. Anderson acquired the company in a 363 asset sale, negotiated a new labor agreement and introduced new executive management. Anderson worked with the management team to execute a turnaround within the first year of ownership, followed by several years of reinvestment in the business to expand into new product lines and geographies, including the start-up of a production facility located in China to support global growth initiatives. After eight years of ownership by Anderson, Hastings was sold to a financial buyer.
Kux Graphic Systems | Canton, MI
Kux Graphic Systems is the nation’s leading designer, producer and installer of retail exterior imaging systems. At the time of Anderson’s acquisition, Kux was unprofitable and in the process of being spun off by its corporate parent. Anderson turned the company around by restructuring operations and instituting a strategic marketing plan that involved exiting the company’s primary business (automotive decal production) and expanding products and services to drive the exterior imaging business. Kux became the market leader in its segment and the management team bought Anderson out through a refinance of the rapidly growing business.
LaBella Sausage, LLC| Brooksville, FL
La Bella is a leading regional manufacturer and distributor of sausage products in the Southeastern United States. Anderson invested in La Bella in partnership with the founder, providing him with liquidity and allowing him to retain a significant equity stake while also infusing the business with growth capital. Together Anderson and the founder recruited additional management talent and focused on strategically growing the business through product line and geographic expansion. La Bella successfully diversified its customer base, increased distribution and shelf space to leading retailers and introduced branded product. Within seven years of Anderson’s investment, sales and profitability tripled and the company was sold to a strategic acquirer.
Oberfields, LLC | Columbus, OH
Oberfields manufactures and distributes a broad range of concrete hardscape and masonry products, including segmental retaining walls, pavers, architectural block, gray block, precast products and hardscape and masonry accessories. Anderson acquired the company’s assets from its senior lender, completed an operational restructuring that included streamlining the business and consolidating operations, and implemented a management transition to execute a strategic growth plan and integrate two strategic add-on acquisitions. The company consistently increased profitability through the point at which it was sold to a financial investor.
Perfect Fit Industries, LLC | Charlotte, NC
Perfect Fit is a designer and supplier of home textile products, specializing in bedding products, sold as both proprietary and licensed brands to leading retailers in the United States and Canada. Prior to Anderson’s ownership, Perfect Fit was in default of its credit facility as a result of underperformance and excessive leverage. Anderson worked with Perfect Fit’s senior lender to acquire Perfect Fit’s assets pursuant to Article 9 of the Uniform Commercial Code. Operating with a recapitalized balance sheet, the Perfect Fit management team embarked on a long term strategy targeted at maximizing profitability by first eliminating unprofitable business and restructuring the organization and, second, growing to both traditional and e-commerce retailers. Within seven years of Anderson’s investment, Perfect Fit was generating significant profit and had developed several new product initiatives to fuel future growth. The company was sold to an internationally-based strategic acquirer.
TecArt Industries, Inc. | Farmington Hills, MI
A premier nationwide manufacturer and distributor of point-of-purchase and back-lit signs, TecArt had been owned and operated by the company’s founders prior to its sale to Anderson. After acquiring the company, Anderson recruited a senior management team to execute a strategic growth plan that involved expanding product offerings and increasing sales and marketing efforts. The company increased market share, became the dominant electronic sign supplier to the telecommunications industry, and was sold to a strategic acquirer.
Thayer Power and Communication Line Construction Co. Inc. | Fairview, PA
Thayer is a leading provider of utility line and related engineering, wiring and construction services, primarily serving the power and communication industries. After acquiring the company in a 363 asset sale, Anderson worked with the management team to implement a new operating plan and financial controls which facilitated the company’s entry into new market segments and new geographies. Thayer was able to grow its business over 10x and was eventually sold to a financial acquirer.
Theodore Bargman Company | Albion, IN
The nation’s leading producer of interior and exterior lighting for recreational vehicles, Theodore Bargman had been owned by a charitable foundation for twenty years following the founder’s passing. The company had consistently been generating flat revenue and marginal profitability. Anderson acquired the company and recruited a new senior management team to execute a strategic plan that targeted both sales growth and cost rationalization. In addition, Anderson worked with management to acquire three complementary businesses. As a result of these efforts, sales doubled and profits increased four-fold. The company was sold to a strategic acquirer.
Wetsel, Inc. | Harrisonburg, VA
One of the nation’s leading distributors of lawn and garden supplies, Wetsel was formerly owned by a large corporate parent and suffered numerous operational and strategic inefficiencies. Upon acquiring the Company, Anderson executed a turnaround strategy that involved improving profitability and establishing initiatives to further grow the business. As a result of these efforts, Wetsel generated consistent profitability which, supported by a strong balance sheet, yielded considerable cash distributions to shareholders. After eight years of ownership by Anderson, Wetsel was sold to a strategic acquirer.
Yale Rubber Manufacturing Co., Inc. | Sandusky, MI
A leading supplier of rubber components to the OEM automotive industry, Yale historically focused on producing high volume, low value product. Anderson acquired the business and recruited a new CEO and, together, focused on expansion of engineering capabilities to develop and grow value-added product lines. In Anderson’s third year of investment, Yale merged with South Haven Rubber to become the dominant supplier in its market. Sales and profits continued to grow, and management eventually bought out Anderson’s share.
Zacova Industries, Inc. | Roseville, MI
A designer and manufacturer of large metal stamping tools and dies, Zacova was owned by two individuals who had become incompatible, resulting in the company’s deteriorating performance. Anderson partnered with one of the former shareholders and worked together to expand manufacturing capabilities and reinvest in the company’s sales staff to promote growth. Zacova was profitable from the day of acquisition and was eventually sold to management.