Mergers and Acquisitions

With deal news from Fiserv, QPS Companies, Paragon Development Systems, Orbis and RW Baird’s investment banking team

Fiserv acquires Texas reseller
Fiserv Inc. a Brookfield-based provider of information technology services to the financial industry, has acquired The Data Center (TDC) based in Grapevine, Texas, from Compass Bank.

Financial terms of the sale were not disclosed.

TDC was a licensee and reseller of the Fiserv ITI Premier core banking system, which is available for either outsourced or in-house account processing, and offers products and associated consulting services for virtually every banking function. Fiserv is acquiring all of The Data Center’s assets and contracts, and the center’s 30 employees will become employees of Fiserv.

"This acquisition allows Fiserv to extend our core footprint and increase our ITI Outsourcing presence in the Texas marketplace through new expansion in the Dallas and Rio Grande Valley areas. We can offer these clients an experienced staff of professionals who are recognized as leaders in providing quality service," said Mike Young, president of Fiserv Bank and Thrift Division. "We began this relationship with The Data Center more than 20 years ago, and now Fiserv is pleased to have them join our team and begin directly serving these clients and other banks in the region. This direct partnership approach allows Fiserv to offer a personal relationship, along with the combined strength of the Fiserv product lines, that can help our clients achieve best-in-class results."

QPS acquires Personnel Resources
QPS Companies Inc. has acquired Personnel Resources Inc. and will take over the business of the company’s locations in Beaver Dam and Richland Center.

Personal Resources Inc. was acquired from owner and president Susan Christian, who will no longer be active in the day-to-day operations, but will stay on as a consultant with QPS.

The associate employees of Personnel Resources Inc., currently working on assignment at local companies, will be retained and moved to QPS’ payroll. The company’s name will not be retained after six months, as the operations and internal staff will be folded into QPS’ business.

With this acquisition, QPS will add an estimated 5.5 percent of business.

"We’re excited about this acquisition, which allows us to expand our geographical reach and better serve both our customers and applicants," said Dan McNulty, executive vice president and chief operating officer of QPS.

QPS has grown significantly over the last two years, both organically and through acquisitions. In April of 2008, QPS acquired N.E.W. Contracting in the Fox Valley area. In 2007, QPS opened a branch in West Bend and an additional branch in Rockford, Ill., and in 2006, QPS acquired Employability and ShoreWorks and opened five new branches.

PDS acquires Vision Controls Corp.
Oconomowoc-based Paragon Development Systems Inc. (PDS) has acquired Vision Controls Corporation of Hartland. Vision Controls employees and products have been transferred to PDS’ headquarters in Oconomowoc, where they will work with the PC Technologies Group.

With more than two decades of consecutive annual revenue growth, PDS vice president Chris Thorsen said the company consistently works to expand its service offerings, and the Vision Controls acquisition allows PDS to build on its expertise in the fast-growing internet protocol (IP) video security marketplace.

"Vision Controls is a world-leading designer and developer of video management systems that utilize IP infrastructure for security solutions," Thorsen said. "The Vision Controls HVR and IVR product lines are known for high-quality video capture, compression, storage and event retrieval capabilities. We are pleased to welcome the talent and technology of Vision Controls to the PDS team."

As a technology services company, PDS designs, supplies, implements and manages IT for organizations in four primary markets: health care, government/higher-education, corporate and professional services.

In addition to Oconomowoc, PDS has office locations in Brookfield, Madison, Wausau, and Kansas City, Kan.

Spire Capital Adisors, a Milwaukee M&A advisory firm, provided M&A advisory services to Vision Controls in the transaction.

Orbis acquires Canadian firm
Orbis Corp. an Oconomowoc-based subsidiary of Menasha Corp., has acquired Norseman Plastics Holdings Ltd. of Toronto, Ontario.

Norseman manufactures plastic reusable containers, trays, bins and pallets used in bakery, beverage, dairy, recycled material/waste collection, food service, agriculture and meat processing applications.

Included in the acquisition are manufacturing and warehousing facilities in Toronto; Howell, Mich.; Osage City, Kan. and Kissimmee, Fla. Norseman Plastics has approximately 600 employees in North America.

According to Jim Kotek, president of Orbis, "This acquisition strengthens Orbis’ position as a leader in plastic reusable packaging and provides us with tremendous growth opportunities in diverse markets. Our customers are continually looking to Orbis for leadership and expertise in ways to reduce their supply chain costs with reusable packaging. Norseman’s diverse product line, strong customer relationships and industry knowledge are consistent with Orbis’ vision and expertise."

"Norseman’s expertise and leadership in markets in which Orbis currently does a small amount of business will allow it to solidify and increase its share in targeted markets," said Arthur Huge, president and chief executive officer of Menasha Corp. "In addition, Norseman’s strong history in engineering and product development will lead to enhanced solutions for the customers of both businesses."

Baird expands into North Carolina
Milwaukee-based Robert W. Baird & Co. Inc. has opened a new office in Charlotte, N.C., where it has hired two former Wachovia senior investment banking professionals.

The new Charlotte office will be led by Brian McDonagh, managing director and co-head of M&A, and Joe Pellegrini, managing director.

McDonagh will play a dual role, supporting Baird’s broad M&A advisory practice across all industry sectors while also leveraging his experience and relationships in the industrial market to help drive the firm’s overall investment banking business in this sector.  Pellegrini will focus on clients in the consumer sector, more specifically within the retail, branded apparel and footwear segments.

Frank Stokes, managing director in the health care investment banking group and formerly of Wachovia, will join McDonagh and Pellegrini at the new location.  Stokes, who joined Baird in 2007 from Wachovia, was initially based out of the firm’s Chicago office.

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