PolyVision, a portfolio company of Industrial Opportunity Partners (IOP), has acquired Marsh Industries, a manufacturer of visual display boards. IOP acquired PolyVision in February 2020 from publicly traded Steelcase.
Marsh Industries is a maker of markerboards, tackboards, space dividers, and acoustic panels used in educational institutions. According to IOP, the family-owned business is one of the largest manufacturers of visual board products in the United States.
New Philadelphia, Ohio-headquartered Marsh traces its roots back to 1914 when the Marsh family formed the Marsh Lumber Company in Dover, Ohio. In 1958, the company launched a chalkboard division which was the origin of the visual display products that the company sells today. The company changed its name to Marsh Industries in 1995 and has been owned by five generations of the Marsh family.
Post-closing, Marsh will operate as an independent brand within PolyVision and will continue to focus on board manufacturing for its existing product lines, and Brian W. Marsh will continue to lead the business as its CEO.
“Marsh’s joining the PolyVision family is a great fit and I couldn’t be more pleased. We’ve worked together for years in a different capacity and this new partnership provides opportunities for growth for both businesses,” said Mr. Marsh.
PolyVision is a manufacturer of ceramic-coated steel used in whiteboards, chalkboards, and architectural cladding. The company is led by CEO Peter Lewchanin and is headquartered north of Atlanta in Johns Creek, Georgia with manufacturing facilities in Okbmulgee, Oklahoma and Genk, Belgium.
“I’m excited to combine two of the industry’s legacy brands,” said Mr. Lewchanin. “Marsh has a rich history dating back to 1914, with five consecutive generations of family ownership who share the same core values as PolyVision. This new operations platform will enable us to expand our panel fabrication capacity and our geographic presence, offer higher volumes of quality CeramicSteel panels and local mass customization.”
PolyVision’s CeramicSteel is produced by coating a cold-rolled carbon steel substrate with porcelain enamel. The product is used to construct traditional chalkboard and whiteboard surfaces and as architectural walls and cladding for public spaces.
IOP focuses on acquiring middle-market manufacturing and value-added distribution businesses, typically with revenues between $30 million and $400 million. The firm targets businesses with strong product, customer, and market positions and provides both management and operational resources to support sales growth and operational improvements. IOP is headquartered in the Chicago suburb of Evanston.
Private Equity Professional | August 7, 2020