Leading VMS Contract Manufacturer Achieved Significant Growth and Profitability through Operational Improvements, Facility Expansion, and Best-In-Class Quality Assurance
Sun Capital Partners, Inc. (“Sun Capital”), a leading private investment firm specializing in leveraged buyouts and investments in market-leading companies, today announced that an affiliate has completed the sale of Cornerstone Research & Development (“Cornerstone” or the “Company”), the largest independent “pure-play” contract manufacturer in the vitamins, minerals, and supplements (“VMS”) industry, to Integrity Nutraceuticals. Terms of the private transaction were not disclosed.
Headquartered in Ogden, Utah, the Company develops, produces, and packages over 600 capsule, tablet, and powder products for a variety of leading, blue-chip branded VMS customers. The Company’s product portfolio consists of vitamins, minerals, botanicals, probiotics, anti-aging, and general wellness products. Cornerstone operates out of its state-of-the-art 300,000 sqft. facility that offers its customers a variety of turnkey manufacturing solutions. The Company has been a leading innovator in the VMS category, and in a given year, Cornerstone’s research and development team typically develops 30-35 new or enhanced products, reengineers more than 100 existing products, and pilots another 150 products according to customer demands.
Following the acquisition of Cornerstone by an affiliate of Sun Capital in 2012, the Company implemented numerous operational improvements focused on improved quality assurance, increased reporting disciplines, and further facility automation. These improvements have led to best-in-class manufacturing capabilities and pharmaceutical-grade quality. The business was further strengthened through strategic capital investments in new powder, packaging, and tableting equipment, which have increased manufacturing capabilities and capacity to support continued growth from new and existing customers. As a result of these efforts, Cornerstone was able to nearly double EBITDA in just two years.
“We are pleased that under our ownership, Cornerstone has made significant advancements across the board, achieving strong top-line momentum while significantly improving manufacturing capabilities, quality assurance, and profitability,” said Marc Leder, Co-CEO at Sun Capital. “Having successfully implemented a series of operational improvements and meaningfully expanded the Company’s state-of-the-art manufacturing facility, we are confident that Cornerstone will continue to build on its strong industry momentum and market-leading position.”
This transaction marks Sun Capital’s 4th exit of 2014. Last year the firm completed eight exits and two successful IPOs, leading to more than $1 billion in realizations for the year— a record for the firm.
Houlihan Lokey served as the exclusive financial advisor to Cornerstone and assisted in structuring and negotiating the transaction on their behalf.
About Sun Capital Partners, Inc.
Sun Capital Partners, Inc. is a pioneer in private equity investing, uniquely combining the financial skills and resources of a traditional private equity firm with the insight and expertise of a world class operating team. The firm focuses on market-leading companies that can benefit from its in-house professionals, resources, and expertise in their efforts to materially improve operating performance. Sun Capital affiliates have invested in more than 335 companies worldwide with combined sales in excess of $45 billion since its inception in 1995. Sun Capital has offices in Boca Raton, Los Angeles and New York, and affiliates in London, Frankfurt, Paris, Luxembourg, Shanghai and Shenzhen.