Oak Creek-based flexible packaging manufacturer Seville Flexpack Corp. will be sold, the company’s interim leadership announced today.
The family business, established in 1978 by Walter Yakich, has been tied up in probate while a lawsuit plays out among his children. Yakich died in June 2014, and had several provisions in place for the legacy of his estate, including the business. His five living children and his late son’s widow have been hashing out the ownership and control of the business in Milwaukee County Circuit Court since November 2014. The parties came to a settlement agreement on Jan. 27.
Through the sale of the business, the assets of Yakich’s trust will be monetized and distributed to the children by the court.
Laxson Boyd was appointed interim chief executive officer of the company on Sept. 1. He has been working to prepare the company for a potential sale by positioning it for expansion, with plant improvements and $500,000 invested in new technologies and expanded capabilities on its presses, Boyd said.
“We would certainly hope that we’d be able to find a strategic buyer with the close industry alignment—someone in the flexible packaging industry for whom the customer base and the employee base and the capacity that we have in our production facility would be valuable,” he said.
Seville Flexpack has about 30 employees at two adjoining facilities totaling 205,000 square feet. While the company will seek the highest possible value from whichever buyer offers it, Boyd said keeping the facility operational in Oak Creek would drive the highest value for the owner so it would likely remain open.
“We’re working very aggressively to keep the company on stable footing and we feel we’ve done a good job of that,” Boyd said. “We’ve preserved our customers and we’re bringing on new business, new customers. I don’t think (the lawsuit) will be a significant detraction to the value of the business.”
Seville Flexpack has engaged Milwaukee investment bank TKO Miller to market and sell the business, with a preference for a strategic buyer who can take advantage of its talent and operations, the firm said.
“We aren’t considering it a distressed asset sale. We’re expecting that it will be a normal sale process with a little bit more explanation upfront,” said Tammie Miller, managing director at TKO Miller. “But really, most businesses we sell have a little explanation upfront.”
The investment bank will market the company to a national list of prospective buyers, including interested buyers who have approached the company during the legal battle. The sale is expected to close within the next six months.
Seville Flexpack makes flexible packaging for the food, beverages, pharmaceutical, medical supplies, personal products and confectionary markets. Among its capabilities are rotogravure and flexographic printing, solvent-free laminations, registered cold seal, registered pattern heat seal coatings, single and multi-ply laminations and pouch fabrication.