June 10, 2020
Don Loepp, Plastics News Editor
Injection molder Revere Plastics Systems Inc. is growing again through acquisition, buying two plants from Techniplas LLC, which is in voluntary restructuring.
According to court documents, Revere is paying about $2.13 million for the assets of plants in Auburn, Ala., and Ankeny, Iowa.
“We will run those as Revere facilities, rather than just taking the equipment and moving it elsewhere,” Doug Drummond, Revere’s vice president of sales and marketing, said in a telephone interview. “We are very excited about this deal, and I do like the idea of keeping these plants open, as well as our own continued growth.”
Revere, which is based in Novi, Mich., has been owned by French private equity firm Ardian since 2017. Historically a major supplier to the appliance market, Revere has been diversifying its customer base. Drummond said this acquisition will help continue that effort, plus it gives Revere a presence in two regions where it already has demand from existing customers.
“We have many customers that have facilities in the Southeast, as well as in the upper Midwest. Having plants there is something we’ve wanted for a long time,” Drummond said.
Revere has been designated the lead stalking horse bidder for the assets, and court approval is expected by June 15.
Nashotah, Wis.-based Techniplas itself is an injection molder that has grown through acquisition. It includes the former Nyloncraft LLC, with facilities in Misawaka, Ind., and Jonesvillle, Mich.; Dickten Masch Plastics LLC, with facilities in Wisconsin, Iowa and Monterrey, Mexico; and Vallotech SA in Vallorbe, Switzerland. In 2014 it doubled in size with the purchase of the Switzerland-based Plastics Technology Automotive and Industrial division of Weidmann International Corp. That deal included the 140,000- square-foot Auburn plant, which opened in 2004.
In recent years, Techniplas has been working on refinancing its debt. George Votis, Techniplas’ majority owner, founder and chairman, had arranged for financing last fall from The Jordan Co., a private investment firm based in New York. But that deal was scuttled by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Faced with $175 million in outstanding notes scheduled to mature on May 1, Techniplas led for Chapter 11 protection in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Wilmington, Del. on May 6. Techniplas’ note holders have a stalking horse bid for the remainder of the company, which remains open.
Techniplas posted a loss of $21 million in 2019 on sales of $475 million. The company ranked No. 36 in the most recent Plastics News survey of North American injection molders.
Revere ranked in a tie for No. 39, with estimated sales of $255 million. Revere has plants in Clyde, Ohio; Jeffersonville, Ind.; Poplar Bluff, Mo.; Brampton, Ontario; and Fraser, Mich. It acquired the Fraser plant in 2018 when it bought certain operations and assets of Tier 1 automotive supplier Sur-Flo Plastics & Engineering Inc.
Prior to that acquisition, Revere had been growing its automotive business organically. Drummond said the deal with Techniplas will help Revere grow in automotive, outdoor power equipment, medical and other end markets. He acknowledged that Revere will have to win business that Techniplas ran in the two plants prior to its bankruptcy.
“We think in the matter of a month or so we can have tools and production running again,” Drummond said.
The Ankeny plant has presses ranging from 85-3,000 tons of clamping force. The Auburn plant has presses ranging from 230-1,500 tons, and has expertise in two-shot molding.
Drummond said finalizing a deal was complicated by the coronavirus pandemic.
“Even under regular circumstances it would have been difficult,” because of the timing of the bankruptcy, he said.
“We had to deal with having to do every single thing through a Zoom call or some sort of video conferencing. And then traveling to the facilities, everything was complicated, it took two days to get the team anywhere.”