Sunday, May 7, 2017

Legacy Printing Companies Fade Into History – April 2017 M&A Activity

The Printer's Devil - Signage in York, UK
Dartmouth; the name brings forth an association with history, tradition, quality, intelligence, excellence, and competitiveness. In the case of Dartmouth Printing, the association is more than a commercial operation borrowing the name to impart those qualities to its brand; the printing company was originally established as Dartmouth Press in 1793 as the in-plant printing operation for the college that bears the same name. Fifty years later, in 1843, Dartmouth College spun off the printing operation as an independent printing company. 
Daniel Webster

According to company legend, the printing company employed several famous alumni of the college, including Nelson Rockefeller who worked as a typesetter while attending Dartmouth and later became governor of New York and a US Vice President. Many years before, Daniel Webster, the famous attorney, politician and orator, reportedly worked as a “printer’s devil” at the printing company before he graduated from Dartmouth in 1801. Webster eventually served in the House of Representatives, in the Senate, and as US Secretary of State. Webster not only negotiated the final settled line between the US and Canada, but also famously (and fictionally) defended a New Hampshire farmer who had sold his soul to the devil.

Dartmouth Printing is now part of the CJK Group, which recently acquired The Sheridan Group, and which itself had acquired Dartmouth Printing in 1998. The CJK Group has grown through acquisitions from its roots as Bang Printing in Brainerd, Minnesota, and began its roll-up acquisition strategy in 2013 with the asset purchase of Hess Printing in a bankruptcy 363 sale (see The Target Report – May 2013). Bang subsequently acquired book printers Victor Graphics in Baltimore, Maryland and most recently Sentinel Printing in St. Cloud, Minnesota. Bang also has a Los Angeles location, marketed as Sinclair Printing. The common thread running through each of the CJK Group acquisitions is that each company is strongly anchored in book printing, along with expertise in publications and catalogs, and this latest acquisition is right in line with that strategy.
Beginning with its relationship with the college and including its inclusion with CJK‘s acquisition of Sheridan, the former college print shop is now with its ninth owner. It has been reported that the Dartmouth name is being retired and that the New Hampshire location will be flying the Sheridan brand name flag and no longer carry the name of the venerable college with the ivy league heritage.

No far from Sheridan’s home base in southeast Pennsylvania, another legacy company in the printing industry, Intelligencer Printing, has been acquired by newly-formed Intellicor Communications, a roll-up that also includes Pemcor Printing, also located in Pennsylvania and AE Litho, a South-Jersey commercial printing and fulfillment operation. Intelligencer Printing is one year younger than Dartmouth Printing, having been established in 1794 as the printing operation for the Lancaster Journal and until this sale has been owned by successor companies to the original newspaper publisher. It’s not clear yet if the historical name will live on as a division of Intellicor or be retired to the dustbin of printing company names, this one having survived longer than most.

Equipment Manufacturing

While not as numerous as the M&A activity occurring in the operational printing and packaging industries, a steady drumbeat of transactions have been completed in the realm of equipment manufacturing - the folks that make the machines that enable the efficient printing of ink on substrates and related ancillary functions.

The M&R Companies specialize in manufacturing screen printing and related equipment, much of which is used for printing textiles as large format graphics. Owned since 2015 by the Corinthian Capital Group, M&R acquired Novus Imaging, a New Hampshire-based manufacturer of digital inkjet UV printers. It’s a strategically savvy combination since digital printing devices continue to make inroads into applications formerly served exclusively by screen printing.

Winkler+ Dünnebier, acquired by Barry-Wehmiller in 2015, broadened its reach in the envelope manufacturing business with the acquisition of envelope printing press manufacturer Halm Industries, maker of the ubiquitous Halm Jet Press. Barry-Wehmiller has grown via acquisitions to revenues in excess of $2.5 billion, this latest deal being its 89th, many with a clear focus on companies that process, slit, sheet, corrugate, print and package paper.

Here is a summary of transactions involving equipment manufacturers in the printing and packaging industries in 2016 and the first four months of 2017 (see the corresponding Target Reports for more info and links to sources):

M&A Activity - Printing & Packaging Equipment Manufacturers (2016/2017)
Acquirer Acquired Notes Month
(Port co. Corinthian Capital)
Novus Imaging Flatbed inkjet printers Apr-17
Winkler + Dünnebier
(Div Barry Wehmiller)
Halm Industries Envelope printing presses Apr-17
Goss International
(Port co. American Ind. Partners)
Graphic Automation Controls Press upgrades, maintenance Mar-17
Danaher Advanced Vision Technology Print inspection systems Mar-17
Baldwin Technology
(Port Co. Forsyth Capital)
Air Motion Systems LED UV curing systems Jan-17
Bell and Howell
(Port Co. Versa Capital Mngt.)
Sensible Technologies Mailing services equipment Jan-17
Global Graphics Meteor Limited
(Div. TTP Group)
Printhead driver systems Dec-16
HP Inc. Printer business
(Samsung Electronics)
Office printers Sep-16
Double E
(Port co. Incline Equity Partners)
Appleton Mfg. Division Web accessories Aug-16
Cefla Finishing JetSet Industrial Specialty inkjet equipment Aug-16
Xaar Engineered Printing Solutions Pad printing equipment Jul-16
Epson Robustelli Digital inkjet textile printers Jun-16
Koenig & Bauer (KBA) Iberica
(Div. Cerutti Group)
Diecutting equipment mfg. May-16
Apex Technology Lexmark International Printing devices Apr-16
Novus Imaging Redwood Technologies Inkjet technology design Apr-16
Xerox Document Technology Digital printing equipment Jan-16
Mimaki La Meccanica Costruzione Tessili Textile printing machines Jan-16
Ricoh AnaJet Direct to garment printing Jan-16


Resilience Capital Partners teamed up with The Kennedy Group to form Lux Global Label Company, which then acquired National Label, a Pennsylvania-based company with additional production facilities in Puerto Rico and Singapore. According to the press release issued by SSG Capital, the investment banking firm that ran the sale process, National Label had completed a significant capital investment program and was poised to compete in the consolidating global packaging segment, but had developed resultant cash flow constraints that led to the decision to seek buyers for the company. The investment in Lux Global Label is Resilience Capital’s second recent foray into print-related industries, the private equity fund having acquired printing and document management company DG3 in August 2016 (see The Hyde Opinion – Sept 2016). The Kennedy Group is, like Resilience, located in the Cleveland area. Kennedy is a manufacturer of labels, flexible packaging and RFID tracking systems, and has two additional locations, both in Florida.

Pritzker Group Private Capital continued to build out its ProAmpac platform with the acquisition of Trinity Packaging Corporation. Trinity is a New York-based producer of large format flexible packaging used for lawn and garden products, pet food, and other bulk products. Trinity has operations in New York and Virginia. This acquisition brings the total number of manufacturing plants under the ProAmpac umbrella to 22 sites. The ProAmpac packaging roll-up was created by Wellspring Capital which then sold to the Pritzker fund in a secondary buyout (see Moving Pieces Around the PE Chessboard).

The Resource Label Group, a portfolio company of First Atlantic Capital, announced the acquisition of Gintzler International, a label printing company located in Buffalo, New York, with a second location in Texas. The acquisition is the company’s tenth under First Atlantic’s ownership which brings the total to thirteen manufacturing facilities in the United States and Canada. In addition to the Resource Label Group platform, First Atlantic Capital also is invested in the flexible packaging segment. In 2014, First Atlantic folded MRI Flexible Packaging into C-P Flexible Packaging, which it acquired the year before.

2017 April - Mergers and Acquisitions in the Printing, Packaging, Paper & Related Industries

Deal Party #1
(Surviving Entity)
($Mil )

Party #1 Address

Deal Party #2
($Mil )

Party #2 Address

Deal Structure


Lux Global Label Company
(Port co. Resilience Capital Partners)
No Data Lafayette Hill, PA National Label No Data Lafayette Hill, PA 4/28/17 No Data Asset Acquisition
(SSG Capital Advisors)
Label printing Link
Static Control No Data Sanford, NC Ink Technology Corporation No Data Cleveland, OH 4/26/17 No Data Asset Acquisition Impact & inkjet inks Link
Vision $72.5 Chicago, IL The Core Organization No Data Elmhurst, IL 4/25/17 No Data Acquisition Direct response agency Link
NPES No Data Reston, VA Graphic Arts Show Company
(JV w/ PIA and Ideallliance)
No Data Reston, VA 4/20/17 No Data Buyout of Minority Printing trade shows Link
M&R Companies
(Port co. Corinthian Capital)
No Data Roselle, IL Novus Imaging No Data Moultonborough, NH 4/18/17 No Data Acquisition Flatbed inkjet printers Link
Saltwire Network No Data Halifax, NS Eastern Canada Newspapers
(Prop. Transcontinental)
No Data
Montreal, QC 4/13/17 No Data Acquisition 27 Community newspapers
(inc. 4 printing plants)
Hubergroup USA
(Div. Hubergroup)
No Data
Kankakee, IL
(Kirchheim, Germany)
Alden & Ott Printing Inks No Data Arlington Heights, IL 4/10/17 No Data Acquisition Printing inks Link
(Port co. Pritzker Group)
No Data Cincinnati, OH Trinity Packaging No Data Armonk, NY 4/10/17 No Data Acquisition Bags & flexible packaging Link
Harland Clarke Holdings
(Port co. MacAndrews & Forbes)
No Data San Antonio, TX RetailMeNot $295.4 Austin, TX 4/10/17 $630.0 Acquisition Online consumer coupons Link
Image Printing No Data Bismarck, ND Knight Printing No Data Fargo, ND 4/7/17 No Data Acquisition
(Crescenda Advisors)
Commercial printing Link
Hoffmaster No Data Oshkosh, WI Sumner Printing No Data Somersworth, NH 4/6/17 No Data Acquisition Hospitality products Link
Resource Label Group
(Port co. First Atlantic Capital)
No Data Franklin, TN Gintzler International No Data Buffalo, NY 4/7/17 No Data Acquisition Label printing Link
Dover Corp $6,956 Downers Grove, IL Caldera Graphics $11.6 Eckbolsheim, France 4/5/17 $37.0 Acquisition RIP & workflow software Link
Intellicor No Data Lancaster, PA Intelligencer Printing $26.6 Lancaster, PA 4/5/17 No Data Acquisition Direct mail printing Link
Intellicor No Data Lancaster, PA AE Litho No Data Beverly, NJ 4/5/17 No Data Acquisition Forms & commercial printing Link
Intellicor No Data Lancaster, PA Pemcor Printing No Data Landisville, PA 4/5/17 No Data Acquisition Commercial printing Link
Winkler + Dünnebier
(Div Barry Wehmiller)
No Data Neuwied, Germany Halm Industries No Data Glen Head, NY 4/4/17 No Data Acquisition Envelope printing presses Link
(Div. CCL Industries)
Toronto, ON Goed Gemerkt No Data Utrecht, Netherlands 4/3/17 $34.4
Acquisition Personalized labels
(Combined $16.1Mil revenue)
(Div. CCL Industries)
Toronto, ON Badgepoint No Data Ahrensburg, Germany 4/3/17 $34.4
Acquisition Name badges
(Combined $16.1Mil revenue)
CJK Group No Data Brainerd, MN The Sheridan Group
(Port co. Jefferies Capital Partners)
$196.5 Hunt Valley, MD 4/3/17 No Data Acquisition Publication & book printing Link

2017 April - Bankruptcy Filings in the Printing, Packaging, Paper & Related Industries

Filing Party

($Mil )

Case #

Filing Party Address


Region & City


Attorney for Debtor

Chapter 11 Filings:
No Chapter 11 Filings Found this Month --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- ---
Chapter 7 Filings:
AMS Press, Inc. 4/13/17 No Data 17-50406 Norwalk, CT 2nd Connecticut
New Haven
Julie A. Manning Suzanne B. Sutton Publisher of academic journals

2017 April - Non-Bankruptcy Closures in the Printing, Packaging, Paper & Related Industries

Closed Company / Facility

Date of Closure
($Mil )

Closing Address
Related Party Related Party
Date Closure Public


JB Print Solutions 4/26/17 No Data Toronto, ON None N/A 4/26/17 Commercial printing Link
Checkerboard Limited 5/10/17 No Data West Boylston, MA None N/A Apr-17 Stationery printing Link
Custom Printing & Copy May-17 No Data East Hartford, CT None N/A Apr-17 Printing & copying Link
H&R Bindery 4/26/17 No Data Menomonee Falls, WI None N/A Apr-17 Trade bindery Link
Custom Bookbinders 5/18/17 No Data Austin, TX None N/A Apr-17 Specialty bookbinding Link
The Garvey Group
(Div. Orora Group)
Jun-17 No Data Franklin, WI Orora Group Hawthorn, Australia 4/3/17 Consolidating post-acquisition
(Formerly Troyk Printing)
The Garvey Group
(Div. Orora Group)
Jun-17 No Data Sturtevant, WI Orora Group Hawthorn, Australia 4/3/17 Consolidating post-acquisition
Commercial printing, retail display
The Garvey Group
(Div. Orora Group)
Jun-17 No Data Milwaukee, WI Orora Group Hawthorn, Australia 4/3/17 Consolidating post-acquisition
Commercial printing, retail display