Compression Polymers Group (“CPG”) is a world leader in the manufacture of highly engineered, thick gauge extruded PVC and polyolefin sheet products used primarily as replacements for metal and wood. Through proprietary formulations, efficient manufacturing processes, and state‐of‐the‐art equipment, CPG established itself as the world’s low‐cost producer in each of its product lines.
During 2000 Clearview entered into a letter‐of‐intent to acquire a fabricator of metal toilet partitions with $6.0 million of EBITDA. Due diligence revealed that plastic partitions were gaining share rapidly and were likely to stunt the future growth of metal, prompting Clearview to drop the acquisition. However, Clearview recognized a possible investment opportunity and engaged an intermediary to contact every partition manufacturer in the country. After visits to each of the major plastic and several of the diversified fabricators, Clearview determined that a plastic partition specialist called Comtec was best positioned among all of the competitors. In addition, Clearview was impressed by the management team and other businesses of Comtec’s parent, Compression Polymers, and sought to acquire the entire business. Crane Group, the majority owner of Compression Polymers, responded favorably to Clearview’s approach and entered into exclusive negotiations with Clearview resulting in a successful acquisition. Crane Group subsequently became a major investor with Clearview in each of its subsequent funds.