Mason Wells Newsletter 2015 – Volume 2

May 1 2015
In This Issue
  • Mason Wells Announces the Sale of Charter NEX Films, Inc.
  • Rita Cox Named President & CEO of Coating Excellence International
Portfolio Company Updates
  • A&R Logistics Achieves Best Safety Performance Score
  • Dedicated Computing joins the Intel® Cluster Ready program
Mason Wells Announces the Sale of Charter NEX Films, Inc.

Mason Wells recently closed the sale of Charter NEX Films, Inc. in February 2015 to Pamplona Capital Management. Pamplona is a global private equity firm, based in New York and London.

Charter NEX, headquartered in Milton, Wisconsin, is a leading provider of high-quality polyethylene films. The Company supplies flexible packaging converters with a broad array of products, from monolayer to high barrier films, for the food, foodservice, industrial, medical, and pet food markets.

“Charter NEX is an outstanding company led by a world-class management team. We have thoroughly enjoyed our five-year association with the business,” said Greg Myers, Senior Managing Director at Mason Wells. “During our ownership of the Company, the management team has successfully implemented initiatives in operational excellence, quality leadership, technical innovation, and facility and equipment expansion. The management team has done an exceptional job and has the business poised for continued success in all the markets it serves.”

“The special relationship between Charter NEX and Mason Wells has taken the Company to a new level and allowed us to become a best-in-class performer,” said Kathy Bolhous, CEO of Charter NEX. “With the support of Mason Wells, we have worked hard over a number of years to become an industry leader in specialty film products. Starting with the acquisition of NEX Performance Films from Appleton Papers in 2010 and further bolstered by the 2012 merger with Charter Films, we have accelerated our growth through infrastructure and capacity investments to establish a leading industry platform. We look forward to continuing this focus on providing our customers with the highest quality products and investing for the future under Pamplona’s ownership.”

Rita Cox Named President & CEO of Coating Excellence International

In December Mike Nowak, cei’s Co-Founder and CEO announced he would be retiring from day-to-day leadership of the Company and that Rita Cox, cei’s President, and COO, would be assuming the title of President and CEO of the manufacturer of flexible and technical packaging products. Mr. Nowak will remain active on the Company’s board of directors in his role as Vice Chairman and retains a significant ownership position in cei.

Mr. Nowak’s passion for innovation, quality, customer service, and low-cost production has led cei from its 1997 greenfield inception to approximately 500 employees and $250 million in annual sales. The Company’s growth has been primarily organic through the addition of key assets, new product development, and lean manufacturing practices. Mr. Nowak has worked closely with Mason Wells since 2008 to help grow the Company. “Mason Wells has really moved cei ahead through its strong support and commitment to the business, and I look forward to continuing to work with them in my new role as Vice Chairman of the Board,” stated Mike Nowak.

Rita Cox joined cei as President and COO in September 2014 after serving as President of Presto Products in Appleton, Wisconsin. “Rita has made a very strong contribution to the business and its employees so far. I am sure that Rita will continue to lead cei to even stronger growth and performance in the years to come,” stated Mr. Nowak.

A&R Logistics Achieves Best Safety Performance Score

A&R Logistics recently announced that it achieved the Company’s best safety score in January 2015 since the rollout of the Compliance, Safety, Accountability (“CSA”) program in December 2010. The Company’s point values in January 2015 were the best since the CSA was rolled out and among the best in the industry. CSA is a Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (“FMSCA”) program to improve large truck and bus safety. The initiative establishes a new nationwide system for making the roads safer for motor carriers and the public alike. The FMSCA was established within the Department of Transportation on January 1, 2000, pursuant to the Motor Carrier Safety Improvement Act of 1999.

Commenting on this achievement, Mark Holden, CEO of A&R Logistics, stated “Since our acquisition of A&R Logistics in December 2012, safety has been our number one priority. This latest accomplishment reflects that our focus is delivering the results that we demand and our customers expect. Well ahead of a federal mandate, we installed electronic logging devices to log drivers’ hours of service on our fleet of over 700 trucks. We further enhanced our operational procedures relating to the logging of hours to ensure we can better document full compliance with all requirements of the new hours of service rules. Our unsafe driving scores are 28% lower than a year ago when we achieved our best score since program inception. You only see this type of year-over-year record-setting improvement when you have an organization and a safety culture that is dedicated to chasing perfection. Our goal is to set the standard in safety and compliance in the dry bulk transportation industry. We are working closely with industry leaders to ensure safety standards are fully understood and consistently applied by all carriers and shippers. We take safety and compliance seriously and believe we help our industry set the standard.”

Dedicated Computing joins the Intel® Cluster Ready program

Dedicated Computing, a global technology company, headquartered in Waukesha, Wisconsin, announced in January 2015 its participation in the Intel® Cluster Ready program to deliver integrated high-performance computing (HPC) cluster solutions to the Life Sciences market.

Powered by Intel® Xeon processors, Dedicated Computing is offering a family of purpose-built analytics and storage clusters for use in bioinformatics research. Dedicated Computing’s HPC cluster, built upon Intel® Cluster Ready architecture, will provide a fully integrated and optimized cluster. These integrated cluster solutions contain securely maintained open source software stacks and cluster management that are designed to accelerate time-to-market, minimize costly validation and verification, and enable 24 hours, 7 days a week, 365 days a year system monitoring for increased uptime.

“We are excited to join the Intel® Cluster Ready program – working together we can deliver leading-edge HPC clustering technology tailored to Life Sciences research applications like genome analysis that will soon lead to personalized medicine,” said Jeff Durst, Director at Healthcare and Life Science Solutions, Dedicated Computing. “Our healthcare expertise and design capabilities help support the needs of our customers with flexible and innovative technology.”

For more information about Intel® Cluster Ready, please visit

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