- Auxo Investment Partners
- Atlas Bernal Midway
August 07, 2018 (Grand Rapids, Mich.) — Private equity firm Auxo Investment Partners (www.auxopartners.com) announced today that it has acquired Midway Rotary Die Solutions, adding deeper capabilities to Auxo's die manufacturing platform – Bernal Rotary Dies, Atlas Die, and Atlas Chem-Milling – and furthering Auxo's commitment to meeting the needs of the most sophisticated and demanding customers. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Joining Auxo's portfolio of industry-leading die manufacturers allows Midway Rotary Die Solutions to continue to grow, serve a wider array of customers and offer its existing customers new capabilities in wide format RP® rotary dies and flexible rotary dies, while preserving its legacy of best-in-class customer service and unrivaled solutions to customers' converting challenges. Midway designs, manufactures and sharpens dies for customers in the automotive, packaging, medical, food processing, tag-and-label, specialty and photo-cutting industries. The company also offers multi-stage heat treatment processes, cryogenic treatment, carton prototyping and technical support to craft the most effective, customized and long-lasting crush-cut dies in the industry.
"Combining Midway with our existing portfolio of die producers allows us to offer our customers an increasingly broad, innovative suite of capabilities, helping them to deliver superior quality and efficiency in their own businesses," said Ken Smott, who, with this acquisition, becomes CEO of Midway Rotary Die Solutions in addition to his existing leadership duties at Atlas Die and Bernal Rotary Dies.
"It was our dream when we bought Midway in 1985 with six employees to build it into a world class organization,” said Rich Seeley, CEO of Midway Rotary Die Solutions, who will retire following the transition. “We spent the last 33 years providing the highest-quality products and service in our industry, and we couldn’t be more pleased to find, in Auxo, a partner who can help our colleagues continue to grow and develop opportunities to provide further innovation and value to our customers."
Expanded Breadth and Product Offerings for Customers with Sophisticated Cutting Needs
- Bernal Rotary Dies produces complex solid Rotary Pressure dies, crush cut dies and state-of-the-art, high-volume rotary converting systems for medical products, battery and energy storage, abrasives, folding carton, automotive, food processing, aseptic and liquid packaging, general consumer products and general converting. Bernal, founded in 1972, combines technical engineering acumen with precision machining capabilities to solve complex production challenges across a wide spectrum of customer markets, including consumer products, specialty materials, food and beverage and other unique applications for companies around the globe. Bernal employs 64 team members in Rochester Hills, Michigan.
- Atlas Die revolutionized steel rule diemaking by developing and introducing laser technology into the die-manufacturing process. Atlas later developed unique flexible rotary die making capabilities and continues to lead the market with its product development and state-of-the-art solutions for complex cutting needs in the consumer products, packaging, food and beverage, medical and pharmaceutical industries. The company, based in Elkhart, Indiana, was founded in 1952 and has 160 employees across six facilities in five states.
- Atlas Chem-Milling (ACM) was established in 1978 by Atlas Die, LLC to manufacture flexible rotary dies for the pressure-sensitive label and business-forms industries. The company went on to produce flexible rotary dies and flexible Eagle dies to meet the cutting needs of markets requiring intricate, precise cutting such as greeting cards, lottery and gaming tickets and folding cartons. Atlas Chem-milling also produces a complement of components supporting Atlas Die’s steel-rule die product lines. Atlas purchased Chem-Par, a division of American Can Company, in 1981 and merged its operations with Atlas Chem-Milling, adding large-format rotoplate dies to Atlas' extensive product offering.
"We are excited to grow our platform with Midway's strong legacy and highly skilled, dedicated workforce," said Auxo Managing Partner Jack Kolodny. "We look forward to helping steward Midway through the next phase of its growth by making long-term investments and enhancing its growth-related infrastructure."
Added Auxo Managing Partner Jeff Helminski: "Midway’s addition to our cutting-die platform is the latest step in Auxo’s journey to thoughtfully and strategically align market participants. We create extraordinary value by providing a complete product offering across the entire spectrum of cutting and converting needs for customers who value technology, reliability and production efficiency. And we will continue to grow this platform organically and acquisitively with partners who share our passion for innovation and solving complex production challenges."
NuVescor Group, a leading mergers and acquisition service provider headquartered in West Michigan and serving clients throughout Michigan and the Midwest, served as M&A adviser to the seller. Other advisers on the transaction included Miller Johnson Plc., Barnes & Thornburg LLP, BDO USA LLP, Mercantile Bank, Oxer Capital Inc., Aon Plc. and Advantage Benefits Group.
A Long-Term, Collaborative Approach
Auxo was named after the ancient Greek goddess of growth and the firm seeks to partner with companies that meet the following investment criteria:
- North America-based
- Manufacturing, industrial, value-added distribution or business services industries
- EBITDA (cash flow) of $1.5-$15 million
- Owner-operators seeking retirement or family succession planning solutions; or existing teams seeking to grow their businesses
- Prefer majority-control investments but will consider select minority-partner opportunities
Auxo’s flexible capital model allows for long-term growth oriented decision-making without artificial deadlines. The structure was specifically designed for family businesses facing a generational hand-off or seeking outside capital or partners to fuel growth
About Auxo Investment Partners
Auxo Investment Partners is a Grand Rapids, Mich.-based private investment firm that partners with owners and management teams of companies at transition points in their history. Auxo works to instill the infrastructure, processes and talent needed to help them grow to their full potential with a long- term investment approach. Auxo’s unique philosophy aligns the interests of its companies, their employees, the communities in which they are located and its investors to achieve optimal outcomes for all. As our name reflects, we are not merely investors, but partners. For more information, please visit www.auxopartners.com
John E. Corey