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Kelso buys majority interest in CL Smith

Private equity firm Kelso, along with affiliated funds, has purchased majority shareholdings in US-based rigid packaging provider CL Smith.

CL Smith specialises in manufacturing, warehousing, distribution and custom-designing rigid packaging solutions.

The company also operates Lyons Blow Moulding, an extrusion blow moulding facility in Brooklyn, Missouri, and is the exclusive distributor of products produced there.

CL Smith’s HAZPlus division serves as a one-stop resource for hazardous materials (HAZMAT) containers and packaging requirements. It acts as a self-certifier and conducts both new and re-certification performance testing.

Following the acquisition, Kelso will merge CL Smith with its present investment in Inmark, a company that distributes packaging products for the rigid container and life sciences markets.

CL Smith CEO Sarah Macdonald said: “We are pleased to welcome an experienced investment partner who shares our vision for the expansion of the company into a national packaging provider.

“Working together, we will strengthen our customer-focused value proposition and best-in-class service offering.”

Kelso investment partner Sandy Osborne said: “At Kelso, we constantly seek opportunities to partner with experienced operators with successful track records.

“Sarah Macdonald and the CL Smith management team have generated impressive historical performance while further strengthening the company’s differentiated market position.

“We look forward to working together to continue CL Smith’s exceptional growth trajectory.”

The financial details of the transaction have not been disclosed.

Kelso acquired the interest from Nancy Smith, who will invest proceeds in relation to the deal along with CL Smith’s management.

Debevoise and Plimpton acted as legal advisor to Kelso.

Ms Smith said: “CL Smith has a long and rich history of providing best-in-class customer service. We are excited to partner with Kelso, who share in our passion for customer care, our people and our culture.

“These customer-centric values are the root of CL Smith’s success and serve as our roadmap for future growth.”

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