Mason Wells Newsletter 2019 – Volume 2

April 1 2019
In This Issue
  • Mason Wells Acquires RJW Logistics Group
  • Mason Wells Announces the Sale of A&R Logistics, Inc.
  • AWT Labels & Packaging Installs New Digital Press
  • MGS Mfg. Group, Inc. Featured in Plastics News
  • Paragon Development Systems Supports Women in Technology
  • Whitehall Specialties, Inc. Wins Export Award
Mason Wells Acquires RJW Logistics Group

On March 6, 2019, Mason Wells closed on the acquisition of RJW Logistics Group, Inc. Mason Wells partnered with Kevin Williamson, Chief Executive Officer, in acquiring the business from the founding Williamson family. RJW Logistics Group will be owned by Mason Wells Buyout Fund IV, LP, senior management, and other co-investors. RJW Logistics Group is the seventh platform investment for Mason Wells Buyout Fund IV, LP.

RJW provides retail logistics services for consumer packaged goods companies supplying traditional and e-commerce retailers. The Company has specialized expertise in LTL consolidation services for small and mid‐sized vendors who sell to large national retailers and grocers. By utilizing its company-owned logistics, warehouse operations, and asset-based transportation divisions, RJW provides turnkey retail logistics services for its customers.

“We are proud of the business we have built and excited about the opportunity to partner with Mason Wells to continue the rapid growth of RJW,” said Kevin Williamson on behalf of the Williamson family ownership group. “Mason Wells will provide RJW with additional resources to achieve the Company’s long-term growth initiatives and to continue to develop our industry-leading retail LTL consolidation services.”

The employees and suppliers of RJW have played a key role in the Company’s success and will continue to do so in the future. “Mason Wells is pleased to support Kevin Williamson and the rest of the existing management team in its growth strategy,” said Kevin Kenealey, Senior Managing Director at Mason Wells. “RJW’s management, employees, and suppliers are all key factors that have allowed the Company to consistently exceed the expectations of its customers.”

RJW has designed the industry’s only turnkey logistics, warehousing, and asset-based transportation service model which supports delivering best-in-class service for its customers. “RJW’s LTL consolidation services significantly enhance a retail supplier’s transportation efficiencies and shipping accuracy,” said Chris Markgraf, Director at Mason Wells. “RJW is able to improve in-stock levels and drive incremental sales for retailers and suppliers alike. We believe the Company’s differentiated service model positions it to capitalize on the growth in omnichannel retail.”

For more information, please visit the Company’s website at

Mason Wells Announces the Sale of A&R Logistics

Mason Wells recently announced the sale of A&R Logistics, Inc., a Mason Wells Buyout Fund III, LP portfolio company, to Wind Point Partners.

A&R Logistics is North America’s largest provider of integrated dry bulk logistics solutions for the chemical and plastic resin industries. A&R Logistics provides a comprehensive suite of services, including transportation, warehousing, packaging, and fully outsourced logistics management for many of the world’s largest producers and distributors of chemicals and plastic resins. The Company operates a national infrastructure of nearly 50 facilities, the industry’s largest fleet of specialized tractors and pneumatic trailers, and a leading technology suite customized for dry bulk transportation.

“We are very pleased to report the sale of A&R, which concludes a highly successful partnership with the outstanding management team at A&R, led by transportation industry veterans Mark Holden and Rich Mitchell,” said Kevin Kenealey, Senior Managing Director of Mason Wells.  “During our ownership, we successfully executed the value creation plan that we developed together with the management team, resulting in strong growth with the world’s largest producers of chemicals and plastic resin. The Company’s commitment to superior service levels and innovative logistics solutions make A&R the leading player in the North American plastic resin supply chain. We believe the Company and team will continue to thrive with their new private equity owners, Wind Point.”

“Mason Wells has been an outstanding partner for both the business and the management team,” said Mark Holden, Chief Executive Officer of A&R Logistics. “Since our acquisition of A&R in 2012, we have significantly improved the Company by investing with Mason Wells’ support in the operations, extending our service offering, and expanding our geographic presence. We are excited for the next chapter of growth under new ownership.”

For more information, please visit the Company’s website at

AWT Labels & Packaging Installs New Digital Press

AWT Labels & Packaging, a Mason Wells Buyout Fund III, LP portfolio company, is a narrow and wide-web converter of labels and flexible packaging for a diverse set of end markets with a particular emphasis on healthcare, recently completed the installation of a new HP Indigo 6900 digital press in its Minneapolis, Minnesota facility. The new press is equipped with options such as an in-line priming unit, imaging oil recycling system, and an in-line spectrophotometer, as well as reinsertion capabilities and the ability to run HP Silver Ink.

“The new HP 6900 gives us additional capabilities, added capacity, and also redundancy within our digital platform, which is critical for us to be able to consistently serve our customers’ needs,” said Ted Biggs, Vice President of Manufacturing. This is the third HP Indigo press AWT has installed since 2007.

For more information, please visit the Company’s website at

MGS Mfg. Group, Inc. Featured in Plastics News

MGS Mfg. Group Inc., a global supplier of injection molded plastic components, tooling, and equipment for healthcare, electronics, automotive, and consumer end markets, was recently featured in Plastics News for expanding its new product development and rapid tooling offerings.

MGS is a Mason Wells Buyout Fund IV, LP portfolio company, and the objective of the initiative is to help customers improve design for manufacturability before a production mold is built by getting involved early. “By leveraging capabilities and experience from our team early in the product development process, we can deliver the best tool designs and recommendations for our customers right from the start,” said MGS President Paul Manley. “Doing so helps our customers shorten the new product development process upfront to create preproduction tooling that quickly transitions to production-ready tools.”

In addition, to design and material selection, MGS leverages its additive manufacturing capabilities to develop prototype tooling and 3D printed parts. MGS can then build bridge tooling to support early production or make final high-production tooling.

MGS, headquartered in Germantown, Wisconsin, has six manufacturing facilities in the United States, Mexico, and Ireland.

For more information, please visit the Company’s website at

PDS Supports Women in Technology

Paragon Development Systems, Inc., a Mason Wells Buyout Fund III, LP portfolio company, is a provider of enterprise information technology (IT) solutions for the healthcare, government, education, and corporate markets. The Company is a sponsor of the National Center for Women in Information Technology (NCWIT) and recently participated in the 2019 Aspirations in Computing Awards.

The NCWIT Award for Aspirations in Computing (AIC) honors young women in grades 9 through 12 who are active and interested in computing and technology and encourages them to pursue their passions. AIC recipients are chosen for their demonstrated interest and achievements in computing, proven leadership ability, academic performance, and plans for post-secondary education. Historically, IT has been a very male-dominated industry, with only 26% of United States computing jobs being occupied by women. To date, more than 12,000 women have been honored with the NCWIT Award for AIC.

PDS has an active seat on the NCWIT’s advisory council and is committed to the ongoing success of the program.

For more information, please visit the Company’s website at

Whitehall Specialties, Inc. Wins Export Award

With more than 95 percent of the world’s population living outside the United States and one billion people expected to join the global middle class in the next decade, growth-minded companies like Whitehall Specialties, Inc., a Mason Wells Buyout Fund III, LP portfolio company, understand the importance of exporting.

The Governor’s Export Achievement Awards recognize companies that have contributed to Wisconsin’s exporting strength by achieving extraordinary results in international markets and elevating Wisconsin’s competitiveness in the global economy. The awards honor businesses that have achieved significant growth or implemented strategies in exporting. Nominees were evaluated on measurable export growth, innovation, and contributions to the state’s overall economy and trade development. Whitehall was one of three recipients recognized for their achievements at this year’s awards presentation.

Whitehall is one of the world’s leading producers of high-quality, high-value cheese products, natural and imitation cheese blends, cheese substitutes, and analog cheese. Its numerous cheese product configurations are offered in over 200 base recipes to customers in more than 25 countries across the globe. Exporting products for the past 15 years, the Company’s exports grew 25% between 2015 and 2018, with year-over-year growth of 15.4% in 2018.

For more information, please visit the Company’s website at

All news