By Nature, Graham Goes for Growth
June 27th, 2017
PHILADELPHIA, June 27, 2017 – Graham Partners, a private investment firm targeting industrial technology and advanced manufacturing companies is pleased to announce the completion of add-on acquisitions for two of its current platform investments, as well as the opening of a custom design center at one of its holdings. The firm’s specialty plastics dispensing and packaging platform, Comar LLC (“Comar”), acquired ProPlas Technologies (“ProPlas”), a custom injection molding manufacturer. Graham’s premium and super-premium pet food manufacturer, BrightPet Nutrition Group LLC (“BrightPet”), acquired an additional premium pet food brand, By Nature.
COMAR ACQUIRES PROPLAS AND OPENS INNOVATION DESIGN CENTER
Comar is a leading, mid-sized specialty packaging and dispensing provider, serving key customers in a variety of end markets including health and wellness, specialty food, household, and industrial. Based in Garden Grove, California, ProPlas specializes in complex injection molding, assembly, and mold making. ProPlas brings engineering expertise and innovative manufacturing technologies that enable Comar to better serve its customers. Adam Piatkowski, Managing Principal at Graham Partners, stated, “All of us at Graham Partners and the Comar leadership team are excited about ProPlas, which expands Comar’s offering into the attractive diagnostics and medical end markets, lowers new product development costs, and adds injection molding capabilities in a strategic location.”
Comar also recently opened a new, state-of-the-art Innovation Design Center in Buena, New Jersey. Comar CEO, Mike Ruggieri, stated, “As a strategic partner, Comar not only has to provide superior quality and service day in and day out, but we also have to collaborate with our customers to understand their market needs.” This center is outfitted with the latest design and simulation tools and technologies that allow customers to see concepts and touch physical products manufactured on-site. Customers will be able to directly collaborate with Comar’s team of top-tier industrial designers, and a full complement of material, process, infrastructure, and automation engineers who have an average of 27 years of experience in the industry.
BRIGHTPET ADDS A NEW BRAND, “BY NATURE”
BrightPet’s acquisition of By Nature secures additional super-premium private label relationships and allows for more branded sales opportunities. Joe Heinmiller, Principal at Graham Partners, states, “Graham acquired the BrightPet platform in 2016, with the intent of aggressively expanding BrightPet’s offering. The By Nature acquisition is the first of several planned acquisitions tied to this objective.” Since acquiring Brightpet last year, Graham has also implemented a number of operational improvements and recruited a seasoned Advisory Council to support the company’s growth strategies.
About Comar (www.comar.com)
Comar, headquartered in Voorhees, New Jersey, is a specialty packaging and dispensing provider with innovative, industry-compliant packaging solutions. Through its merger in October 2014 with Convergence Packaging, which was previously a separately-held Graham Partners portfolio company, Comar serves a variety of end markets for health and wellness, specialty food, household and industrial, personal care, and related market segments where quality, service and innovation matter. With high-quality engineering and technical capabilities, the platform serves as a complete resource for custom design and production of packaging solutions from prototype to finished product.
About BrightPet (www.brightpetnutrition.com)
BrightPet Nutrition Group, headquartered in Lisbon, Ohio, is a leading manufacturer of quality premium and super-premium pet food serving domestic and international markets. BrightPet is comprised of two contract manufacturing businesses, Ohio Pet Foods, Inc. and Southern Tier Pet Nutrition LLC, and the brands of Blackwood Pet Food, LLC, which include Blackwood, Adirondack, By Nature, and Makin’ Trax dog and cat foods. BrightPet serves an attractive segment of the pet food market sold through specialty, independent retailers. The company also holds numerous certifications, allowing it to export to international markets, and is one of only a few USDA Certified Organic pet food producers in the U.S.