Mason Wells Newsletter 2021 – Volume 4
October 1 2021
- Mason Wells Creates Industrial Labels Platform
- KDV Labels, LLC Featured in Label & Narrow Web Magazine
- L.B. White Featured on Local News
- Casey Jones of L.B. White Company, LLC, Elected President of APEA
- Schoeneck Containers, Inc. Featured in Plastics News
On September 24, 2021, Mason Wells Buyout Fund V, LP closed on the acquisition of IDENTCO International Corporation (“IDENTCO”) from founder Scott Lucas and his family. Mason Wells combined IDENTCO with existing portfolio company Reliance Label Solutions, LLC (“Reliance”) to create Industrial Labels Holdings Corp. (“ILH” or the “Company”). The combination of IDENTCO and Reliance creates a diversified platform across geographies, end markets, and customers. The Company will focus on durable track & trace, compliance & regulatory, and other high-value custom printed label applications. The Company is owned by Mason Wells, Scott Lucas, management, and other co-investors.
Founded in 1986, IDENTCO is a manufacturer of durable labels for regulated applications and harsh environments. In addition to printed and converted pressure-sensitive labels, IDENTCO’s suite of solutions includes materials science expertise, precision manufacturing, serialization technology, in-house testing labs, and inventory management programs. Key end markets include electronics, power tools & equipment, auto & transportation, and general industrials. The Company performs printing, die-cutting, slitting, inspection, and other converting operations utilizing modern flexographic and digital equipment. IDENTCO operates two manufacturing locations: its headquarters in Ingleside, Illinois, and Monterrey, Mexico. Sales professionals reside globally in the United States, Mexico, and Europe. IDENTCO’s management team will remain in place, and the Company will be led by President & CEO Scott Lucas.
Since 1998, Mason Wells has invested in numerous Midwest-based companies in the packaging materials and converting sector supporting family ownership transitions.
“We are excited about the opportunity to partner with Mason Wells and continue the Company’s growth,” said Scott Lucas, President & CEO. “With Mason Wells’ labels experience, financial resources, and strategic advice, we plan to invest in people and processes to take the Company to the next level. This new partnership also brings our employees new opportunities as part of a larger organization with more size and scale. We look forward to building upon our world-class technical expertise and manufacturing capabilities to provide top-notch service for existing and new customers.
“There is a long runway for growth and consolidation in the durable industrial labels sector,” said Chris Pummill, Director at Mason Wells. “By combining IDENTCO and Reliance, we created a platform to drive sustained growth, profitability, and benefits of scale. We are very pleased to have partnered with Scott and the senior leadership at IDENTCO and Reliance, who have built impressive businesses with compelling value propositions. We believe we can help the Company identify market share expansion opportunities and accelerate growth through acquisitions.”
Mesirow Investment Banking represented IDENTCO, and Godfrey & Kahn represented Mason Wells in the transaction. BMO Sponsor Finance provided financing for the transaction.
For more information, please visit the Company’s website at www.identco.com.
The October 2021 issue of Label & Narrow Web Magazine featured KDV Labels, LLC, a Mason Wells Buyout Fund IV, LP portfolio company, as a top label converter to watch.
Founded in 1974 by Karen and Dick Vaughn, KDV is a label converter for a diverse set of consumer end markets, including beverage, food, household cleaning, and personal care. The Company has a rich history and strong commitment to environmental sustainability.
In 1994, KDV started bailing waste to create fuel pellets, thus eliminating the majority of its land waste. In addition to the fuel pellets, KDV has reached one sustainability milestone after another over the years. Among the efforts were investments in digital and solvent-free platemaking, a switch to energy-efficient lighting, as well as upgrades in new cleaning technology. In 2003, KDV completed the purchase of Vision Group International. This acquisition catapulted KDV into high-end promotional markets, as well as multiple substrate coupon and game piece sectors. KDV, with 14-color printing capability, became an AIB (American Institute of Baking) certified facility. The certification allowed KDV to run food contact items in a clean and safe environment.
In 2010, Dick and Karen Vaughn began to step away from day-to-day operations, paving the way for their son Shane Vaughn to take over leadership duties. Michael Langman, a longtime KDV employee and family friend of the Vaughn’s, introduced KDV to an acquisition opportunity with his current employer at the time, I-Graphics, LLC. KDV acquired I-Graphics in 2016, and Mr. Langman remains President of I-Graphics today.
In 2020, Karen and Dick Vaughn decided to retire. On June 11, 2021, Mason Wells acquired KDV Labels, LLC, headquartered in Waukesha, Wisconsin, and its sister company I-Graphics, LLC, headquartered in Loveland, Colorado, from the Vaughn family. The Company’s management team has remained in place and is led by Chief Executive Officer and President Shane Vaughn, who continues to grow the business and maintain KDV’s culture.
“We are excited about the opportunity to partner with Mason Wells and continue on our growth trajectory while expanding our capabilities,” said Mr. Vaughn to Label & Narrow Web Magazine. “With Mason Wells’ strong financial resources and broad support, we plan to strategically expand our current press capacity and label capabilities.”
“KDV will continue its people-first focus with customers, employees, and vendors while maintaining a legacy of providing first-class service and quality products,” Mr. Vaughn said in his interview with Label & Narrow Web Magazine. “Over the next few years, we anticipate growing in our existing label markets, both organically and through acquisitions to expand into additional label capabilities requested by many of our loyal customers.”
For more information, please visit the Company’s website at www.kdvlabel.com.
On September 15, 2021, local La Crosse, Wisconsin news channel 19, WXOW, said L.B. White Company, LLC, a Mason Wells Buyout Fund IV, LP portfolio company, is heating up the competition for the Coolest Thing Made in Wisconsin contest.
The Coolest Thing Made in Wisconsin contest highlights manufacturing with sponsorship from Wisconsin Manufacturers & Commerce and Johnson Financial Group. This year, 150 nominees submitted their products, including L.B. White, a manufacturer of branded HVAC equipment and parts for the global swine, poultry, and construction markets.
In his interview with WXOW news, Chris Smith, Vice President of Marketing at L.B. White said, “We call it the Link because we’re linking the product with the people.”
Using Internet of Things (IoT) technology, Link connects L.B. White’s portable heaters for construction markets to owners by sending alerts for low fuel levels or other environmental issues.
“If a plug gets kicked out or the pressures change, that’s not anything the heater can necessarily control, but the Link module will tell you ‘Hey, there’s a problem,’ and then someone can come to check it out,” said Mr. Smith to WXOW. The Link also has an onboard GPS locator and access to diagnostic tools, which is a benefit for remote construction sites or for troubleshooting on the go.
Mr. Smith says the contest is a good way to celebrate local manufacturing in Wisconsin, especially for L.B. White, headquartered in Onalaska, Wisconsin, which has been in business for over 65 years.
For more information, please visit the Company’s website at www.lbwhite.com.
Casey Jones, National Poultry Sales Manager of L.B. White Company, LLC, a Mason Wells Buyout Fund IV, LP portfolio company and manufacturer of branded HVAC equipment and parts for the global swine, poultry, and construction markets, was recently elected as the 2021 President of the Alabama Poultry & Egg Association (APEA).
Mr. Jones, a longtime APEA board member, said he’s proud to take the helm as the association’s President. “It’s very humbling to be a part of an organization that represents so many people in the poultry industry,” said Mr. Jones during his interview with Poultry Times Magazine. “I have worked with a lot of growers who have risked a lot for their farms. I want them, and all other facets of the poultry industry, to be successful.”
Mr. Jones has been the National Poultry Sales Manager for almost 25 years with L.B. White, headquartered in Onalaska, Wisconsin. He was elected to his new role with the association during the recent annual APEA summer board meeting.
For more information, please visit the Company’s website at www.lbwhite.com.
The October 2021 issue of Plastics News featured Schoeneck Containers, Inc., a Mason Wells Buyout Fund IV, LP portfolio company, to report on SCI’s rapid expansion after being acquired by Mason Wells on May 7, 2020.
Schoeneck Containers, Inc., a leading manufacturer of plastic packaging products consisting of containers and closures, recently purchased and installed a Graham Rotary Wheel extrusion blow molder as well as a 1,200-ton Engel injection molding press, totaling over $10 million in investment.
In his interview with Plastics News, Tom Frank, President and Chief Executive Officer of SCI said, “That’s a big deal for us, being a regional blow molder, getting new equipment like this, it’s a game-changer for us.”
The Graham Rotary Wheel is called the Mighty 11 dual station model because it can create larger containers with 11 molds on each of two sides. That means a single rotation of the wheel can produce an output that is much higher than other extrusion blow molding technology.
“I think coming from a regional player, we’ve always made investments in top-of-the-line technology. This piece of equipment for the dedicated line of business we have on it, just the number of units we can kick out, is an order of magnitude higher than what we could do on a typical machine that we purchase. That’s what’s huge about it,” Mr. Frank said to Plastics News.
The purchase of the Graham wheel will allow the Company to shift production from other machines to high-speed lines to create more capacity to grow. This new equipment will be housed in SCI’s new 250,000 square foot site in Delavan, Wisconsin.
SCI told Plastics News it plans to continue expanding into additional technologies. “We want to be the total solution, whether it’s blow molded, injection molded, or a rigid plastic solution with a cap, closure, and label. That’s where we’re headed.”
For more information, please visit the Company’s website at www.schoeneck.com.