|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE||
Chris Tofalli Public Relations, LLC
NEW YORK, March 17, 2010 – Arsenal Capital Partners, a leading New York-based private equity firm that invests in middle-market specialty industrial, healthcare, and financial services companies, today announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement with Eastman Chemical Company (NYSE: EMN) to sell its portfolio company Genovique Specialties Corporation, a leading global provider of benzoate plasticizers.
Genovique Specialties, headquartered in Rosemont, IL, is a global producer of benzoic acid, sodium benzoate and specialty plasticizers that are performance based solutions for the Adhesives & Sealants, Coatings, and PVC markets. The company has benzoate esters manufacturing capabilities in North America, Europe and Asia.
Tim Zappala, Chairman of Genovique, and a Partner of Arsenal Capital who co-heads the firm's specialty chemicals and materials practice, said: "We are very pleased with the progress Genovique has made over the last three years following the implementation of a focused growth strategy. Importantly, the company has developed a strong R&D pipeline that will continue to deliver valuable new non-phthalate products going forward. The sale to Eastman is a natural progression of the company's continued growth path and their global marketing and distribution capabilities will further expand the business globally."
During Arsenal's stewardship since 2005, the senior management team was strengthened with the addition of experienced industry executives who helped to fundamentally reposition the company. Jeffrey Kovach, Managing Director of Arsenal Capital Partners said, "Emphasis was placed on transforming the business to a high growth company, addressing through innovation market needs in adhesives, flooring and non-phthalate plasticizers in a variety of other markets, as well as supporting growing trends towards environmental and health-friendly products. Its manufacturing base was highly optimized and a joint venture was established in China to capitalize on expanding opportunities in Asia. As a result of these and other initiatives, the company attained improved profitability." Genovique today has annual revues of $135 million with manufacturing sites in North America, Europe and Asia.
Ross McMillan, CEO of Genovique, said, "We are very pleased with the support of Arsenal Capital who helped the Executive Team carry out the tranformation of Genovique Specialties into a high growth, innovative, specialty chemicals company. Arsenal's understanding of the chemical industry and their commitment to and support of my management team were instrumental in delivering the exceptional results the company has achieved over the last five years. We believe Eastman is an excellent choice to steward Genovique into the next phase of global development and growth."
The transaction is subject to customary regulatory approvals.
Arsenal's current investments in the specialty chemicals sector include Novolyte Technologies, a leading manufacturer and supplier of specialty electrolyte materials and high performance solvents for lithium ion battery and energy storage applications and a variety of other technically demanding specialty and custom manufactured products. In 2007, Arsenal sold Vertellus Specialties, a leading provider of specialty chemicals for the agriculture, nutrition, pharmaceutical, personal care, and performance materials after successfully building the business and increasing annual sales to more than $450 million.