U.S. Producer of Recycled Coated Paper Acquired by Private Equity Firm
LEXINGTON, MA—11/09/2009—The Watermill Group announced today that it has acquired the Alsip manufacturing facility of the Madison Paper Company from Myllykoski Group. Watermill Group has renamed the newly acquired paper manufacturer FutureMark Paper Company in alignment with the company’s intent to cater to the fast-growing, underserved North American market for environmentally friendly paper. FutureMark Paper Company has the only manufacturing facility in the United States capable of producing up to 100 percent recycled coated paper for magazines and catalogs.
Located just outside Chicago, in the heart of the U.S. print market, FutureMark Paper Company’s innovative manufacturing plant was designed and equipped to produce high-quality paper in the most environmentally sustainable way. The facility’s sustainable manufacturing practices and superior paper products – made with the highest percentage of recycled fiber available anywhere in the world – are attractive to magazine publishers, catalog companies and the growing number of other organizations interested in printing on environmental-grade paper. In addition to the traditional #5 coated paper, a new premium #4 grade and food label products have been recently introduced. All products are made from recovered fiber and have been very well received by the market.
“We were drawn to this paper manufacturer for its green technology and its ability to offer a one-of-a-kind product in an otherwise commoditized market,” said Steven Karol, Founder and Managing Partner of The Watermill Group. “We believe FutureMark Paper Company is well positioned and well capitalized to make tremendous gains in the emerging market for environmentally friendly paper. We’re pleased to add FutureMark Paper Company to our investment portfolio.”
The Watermill Group brings strong assets to FutureMark Paper, including new management, an infusion of marketing expertise and capital investments to expand capacity. The new company will be led by newly appointed President and CEO Stephen Silver, an experienced chief executive with a successful track record of leading companies through marketing transformations that result in dramatically improved sales and profits. Most recently Mr. Silver drove the successful turnaround of office furniture manufacturer Teknion LLC. Prior to that, he held leadership positions in the printing and paper industry including President and CEO of Azon Corp. and North American President of International Paper’s Ilford Photo business. FutureMark Paper intends to retain the Alsip workforce and key senior management including Steven C. Smith, VP and plant manager and Brendan Lesch, VP of Sales and Marketing.