Acquisitions create specialty compounder Alterra Holdings

(as reported in Plastics News; www.plasticsnews.com)

Acquisitions create specialty compounder Alterra Holdings

Investment firm Beaconhouse Capital Management LLC has combined several plastics materials assets to create Alterra Holdings LLC.

Chatham, N.J.-based Beaconhouse acquired all three parts of Alterra in 2016, with a goal of pursuing specialty plastic acquisitions in the elastomer space, Chief Financial Officer Saquib Toor said in an April 25 phone interview.

It first acquired bioplastics firm Trellis Earth Products Inc. of Wilsonville, Ore. Trellis had marketed bio-based finished products and also had operated a bioplastic materials plant in Seymour, Ind., that it acquired from Cereplast Inc. in 2014.

Beaconhouse next became a majority owner of Compounding Engineering Solutions Inc., the Clifton, N.J.-based compounder, which also includes Harmony Elastomers. CES was co-founded in 1999 by industry veteran Arash Kiani.

The final acquisition — so far — for Beaconhouse was the polymer asset base of Metabolix Inc. That deal included lab equipment, an extrusion line and more than 1.8 billion pounds of ​ polyhydroxyalkanoate resin.

“We were trying to find the best compounder, and we found CES,” said Toor, who also serves as a managing partner for Beaconhouse. “We’ve changed the model of the other businesses to reflect what CES was doing.”

Alterra now employs 35 in Clifton and Seymour. The firm aims to add 15 more employees, mainly in technical support and development, by 2019.

Sales for 2017 are expected to be around $10 million. The Clifton and Seymour sites operate a total of eight production lines with annual production capacity of more than 100 million pounds.

Alterra also is selling more than 2,000 cases per month of bioplastic-based food plates, which it makes in Seymour. Toor said the firm is willing to sell that part of the business.

Moving ahead, Alterra will focus on its cross-linked EPDM and butyl materials — which are used in adhesives, automotive and construction — as well as on its thermoplastic vulcanizates and SEBS-type thermoplastic elastomers. The firm’s TPVs will be aimed at automotive uses, while its SEBS materials will be targeted for consumer products markets.

Bioplastics “will be part of the portfolio,” Toor said.

Alterra soon will be launching a new distribution website that will include product pricing. Toor said the website will provide greater transparency and establish Alterra as “price leaders.” Eventually, Alterra wants all of its customers to order via its site.

Kiani now serves as president of Alterra. In addition to CES, he has previous experience at extrusion machinery firm Coperion.

Alterra officials added that the firm “is well funded with equity” and will pursue more acquisitions of smaller companies with unique end market presence or elastomer technology.

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