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Adhesives Maker Sticks to Fast Track

Thursday, May 31, 2012

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Royal Adhesives & Sealants of South Bend, IN, has completed a blitz of takeovers that is fast reshaping the market for high-performance adhesives, sealants and related coatings.

A producer of high-performance adhesives, sealants, coatings and polymers for the defense, aerospace, construction and industrial markets, Royal has snapped up three similar companies in less than six months.

 Acquisitions and organic growth have boosted Royal Adhesive’s sales to more than $250 million.
Acquisitions and organic growth have boosted Royal Adhesive’s sales from $35 million in 2003 to more than $250 million today.

The pace, though aggressive, is not unexpected: Royal made five similar acquisitions from December 2004 to September 2007 and was purchased by private equity firm Arsenal Capital in November 2010.

Put on the fast track to grow, Royal acquired Para-Chem, a South Carolina-based provider of specialty coatings, emulsion polymers and adhesives, just two weeks later.

3 Companies, 6 Months

Royal’s latest addition, announced May 23, brought Clifton Adhesive Inc., of Wayne, NJ, into the fold. Founded in 1945, Clifton is a major supplier to the aerospace, military, recreational and commercial marine market of thermoplastic (polyurethane) and elastomeric (polychloroprene) adhesives and coatings, which are used in fabricating inflatable structures.

Just weeks earlier, Royal announced the acquisition of Extreme Adhesives, of Raymond, NH,  the largest combined manufacturer/distributor of industrial adhesives in New England.  Extreme supplies methyl methacrylate, anaerobic and cyanoacrylate adhesives to the assembly, maintenance and repair, and architectural and building markets.

On Nov. 30, Royal announced it was buying Webcraft Chemicals, which operates under the name Craig Adhesives & Coatings (Craig), a subsidiary of Vertis Communications. Based in Newark, NJ, Craig is a supplier of UV-cured and water-based adhesives and coatings to the printing and graphic arts markets.

‘Niche Acquisitions’

It is that kind of growth—both organically and through acquisitions—that has catapulted Royal from $35 million in annual sales in 2003 to more than $250 million today, the company says.

“We continue to identify leading niche companies that will enhance our product offerings to the markets in which we have chosen to compete,” said Royal CEO Ted Clark.

 Royal’s latest acquisition is Clifton Adhesive, a major supplier to the aerospace, military and commercial marine market.

 Clifton Adhesive Inc.

Royal’s latest acquisition is Clifton Adhesive, a major supplier to the aerospace, military and commercial marine market.

Added John Televantos, a Partner at Arsenal Capital: “We are building the Royal adhesives business in part by selectively identifying niche acquisitions in this specialty subsector where we can apply our deep industry knowledge to achieve enhanced growth.

“We are well on our way to building a strong company that will itself become a leading competitor on a global scale.”

What They Bring

The new additions expand the breadth and depth of Royal’s products and brands, which include Harman Structural Adhesives, Silaprene, Hydra FAST-EN, Parabond and Double/Bubble.

For example, Clifton’s elastomeric adhesives “will add to our growing portfolio of leading adhesives and sealants technologies,” says Clark.

The Extreme acquisition taps that company’s “long history of innovative service, application methods and product performance in the fast growing assembly, maintenance and repair, and architectural markets,” said Zappala.

And Craig brings with it  “a long history of innovation in the fast-growing market for ultraviolet light-cured adhesives and coatings and is providing great solutions and service to the packaging, printing and lamination markets,” said Televantos.

Arsenal Capital Partner Tim Zappala said the latest deal, with Clifton, “represents another important milestone in our strategy to further build a leading adhesives, sealants and coatings business.”


Tagged categories: Acquisitions; Adhesive; High-performance coatings; Marine Coatings; Mergers; Sealers

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