Pax Holdings acquires Iowa soap packager

Milwaukee packaging conglomerate continues to grow

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Milwaukee-based Pax Holdings LLC has acquired Burlington, Iowa-based Doran & Ward Printing Co. The transaction closed Feb. 28.

According to a recent SEC filing, the buyer obtained $3 million in equity from 46 investors as part of the purchase price. There was also bank and mezzanine financing included in the purchase, said Paul Sweeney, partner at Milwaukee private equity firm PS Capital Partners LLC. He declined to disclose the total purchase price.

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Milwaukee-based packaging conglomerate Pax Holdings was established in 2007 and has grown to about $60 million in revenue, Sweeney said. The company has made four acquisitions, and expects to make a fifth acquisition in April. Its member companies are: Crystal Lake, Illinois-based CardinalPack; O’Fallon, Missouri-based Drug Package LLC; Milwaukee-based Pack Logix LLC; Naperville, Illinois-based Pioneer Packaging; Bellwood, Illinois-based Shamrock Labels; and now, Doran & Ward. Pack Logix recently acquired a Waukesha lubricant packaging plant.

Founded in 1952, Doran & Ward provides packaging for the amenity soap industry. It often packages soaps for hotel chains, in folding cartons, paper wrap or plastic film, Sweeney said. The company also does some retail soap packaging. It has two facilities in Burlington, Iowa totaling more than 80,000 square feet, where about 100 employees work an around-the-clock schedule, according to its website.

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