May 7, 2012 – Hammond, Kennedy, Whitney & Company has hired Mark Becker as a new Partner effective May 1, 2012. Mr. Becker will be initially responsible for portfolio company management, focusing on strategies to create shareholder value. He will become Chairman of several portfolio companies and work closely with those management teams. “Mark’s experience in the best practices of other larger private equity firms, combined with his ability to drive operational value creation across a range of industries provides HKW with a significant addition to our current team as we continue to grow our firm,” stated Jeff Wood, HKW President and CEO.
Mr. Becker, 53, most recently was CEO of Baldwin Technology Company. He was appointed from his position on the Baldwin board of directors to lead a restructuring plan to provide liquidity and strategic transaction opportunities during a downturn in the commercial printing equipment industry, leading to the successful sale of the company in March, 2012. Hammond, Kennedy, Whitney & Company’s former Chairman, Ralph “Roy” Whitney, served on the Baldwin board with Mr. Becker for six years.
Previously, Mr. Becker was VP of Portfolio Company Operations for Sun Capital Partners where he was responsible for directing eight portfolio companies in turnaround situations across a variety of industries including packaging, airline services, textiles and furniture manufacturing, and retail industries.
Before that, as COO and CFO of Sylvania Lighting International, Mr. Becker led the turnaround from bankruptcy through restructuring and sale of this global manufacturer of lighting systems for the commercial and automotive markets, under the ownership of DDJ Capital Management and Cerberus Capital Management. Mr. Becker was also previously the CFO of Sappi Fine Papers N.A., and CFO-Europe for W.R. Grace & Co. and Sealed Air Corporation based in London. He began his career at H.J. Heinz & Company.
Hammond, Kennedy, Whitney & Company invests in companies with revenues between $20 million and $200 million and EBITDAs between $2 million and $20 million. Over the past 29 years, HKW has completed 40 platform management buyouts of small middle-market companies throughout North America as well as 42 add-on acquisitions. The firm is headquartered in Indianapolis, IN with an additional office in New York, NY (www.hkwinc.com).