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Akoya Capital Partners Announces New Specialty Chemicals Sector Leader

November 4, 2014, Chicago, IL – Akoya Capital Partners, a private equity firm focused on specialty chemicals, consumer products, information services and consumer foods, today announced that Charles R. (Chas) Eggert has joined the firm as a Managing Director and new leader of its chemicals sector. Don Stanutz will continue in his role as Managing Director as well as Executive Chair of two of Akoya’s specialty chemicals portfolio companies, ICM Products/Amber Chemical Company and CASS Polymers. Akoya's business model and success is based on its industry sector-strategic focus led by former CEOs with deep domain experience.

Chas has almost 40 years of experience in the specialty chemicals industry with a proven track record of creating value across mid-size to large businesses in the value chain. His global business experience includes private equity, turnarounds, strategic realignments, and M&A. Prior to joining Akoya, Chas was President and CEO of OPX Biotechnologies, Inc., a venture capital-financed company that uses biotechnology to produce chemicals from renewable raw materials. During his tenure at OPXBIO, the company grew from a startup to employ 70 people, raised more than $70 million in funding, and formed strategic partnerships with The Dow Chemical Company and Evonik Industries AG.

His prior experience includes a successful nine-year career at National Starch (a division of ICI PLC, later acquired by Akzo Nobel). As Group Vice President of the Specialty Polymers Division he delivered 38% top-line growth over three years to reach $570 million of global sales generating 35% operating profit growth in the same period. As Corporate Vice President and General Manager of Natural Polymers - Europe, Chas led a team of 300 people and grew sales by 30% to $170 million and doubled operating profit. While serving as Vice President of the Global Personal Care Business, Chas was accountable for the development and performance of a 100-person global team. He developed and implemented strategies to revitalize top-line and bottom-line growth through new product innovation and penetration of new application segments, which led to profit increases of 25% per year over three years.

Before National Starch, Chas worked for the Engelhard Corporation as its Vice President of Sales and Marketing for the Specialty Pigments and Additives group. Chas provided leadership for the worldwide marketing and sales organization consisting of 120 people in nine countries.

Chas also spent 20 years at Monsanto Company, at the time a global $9 billion revenue worldwide manufacturer and marketer of specialty chemicals and plastics, agricultural products, pharmaceuticals, and food ingredients. At Monsanto, Chas served a variety of executive management, marketing, business development, manufacturing, and R&D roles within the Detergents and Phosphates, Engineering Plastics, and Growth Enterprises divisions for the company.

“We are thrilled to have Chas on the Akoya team – he brings a wealth of specialty chemicals industry knowledge to the firm and will allow us to continue to drive our investment strategy of combining world-class executives, well-positioned companies, and fully developed value creation strategies to create significant value for management and investors," said Max DeZara, Managing Partner of Akoya.

“I am delighted to be joining Akoya Capital Partners – the firm’s reputation for identifying, buying and growing specialty chemicals businesses through active senior leadership and both organic and inorganic growth is a real differentiator in the marketplace. Akoya excels at robust human capital development, deep operational improvement and high-caliber strategic planning – a combination that is unique to the private equity community,” said Chas.

As part of our Specialty Chemicals strategy, we are seeking platform companies in a variety of categories. Our target segments for specialty chemicals and polymers include (but are not limited to):

  • Adhesives and sealants
  • Coatings
  • Construction
  • Electronics 
  • Flavor and fragrance
  • Oilfield
  • Personal care
  • Polymer modifiers and additives
  • Surface actives
  • Water treatment

We are also seeking add-on acquisitions to our portfolio companies in the Specialty Chemicals sector:

Our strategy is to invest across numerous segments within the Specialty Chemicals sector, combining world-class executives, well-positioned companies, and well-developed value creation strategies to create significant value for management and investors. Our strategy is focused on broadening product and geographic offerings, diversifying revenue streams, improving operational efficiency, creating operating synergies and utilizing best practices.

Investment Criteria – Platform Companies

  • Revenues from $20 to $200 million
  • Minimum EBITDA of $3 million

We will consider smaller companies on a selective basis or as an add-on acquisition.
 

About Akoya Capital Partners
Akoya Capital is a private equity firm that creates and nurtures partnerships between management and capital. With industry-leading sector leaders, proprietary platform organizations, experienced management teams and co-investors, we collaborate on compelling value creation opportunities. Together, we develop and execute industry sector acquisition strategies that deliver significant, measurable value for management, partners and shareholders.

Led by the industry knowledge of our sector leaders, and CEO's, we are highly selective in the sector-based investments we pursue. This exclusivity allows us to work with the finest companies from each industry. We currently focus on investments in the following sectors; specialty chemicals, consumer products, professional information services, and consumer foods.

Contact Us
If you know of a company that fits this profile, we would welcome the opportunity to discuss it with you. Please contact Jason Apple at 312-546-8301 (japple@akoyacapital.com).