Employee-owned investment firm buys Indiana thermoformer Paramount Plastics

Investment unit Empowered Ventures Inc. has acquired thermoformer Paramount Plastics Inc. for an undisclosed price.

Elkhart, Ind.-based Paramount does thermoforming work for the recreational vehicle, marine and specialty vehicle industries. The firm was founded by the Prugh and Lim families in 1982 and has won multiple design awards, officials said in a news release.

Paramount also has developed "unique, non-commodity products." In addition to thermoforming, Paramount offers tool making, vacuum forming, and vinyl wrapping.

Carmel, Ind.-based Empowered was founded in 2020 by fabric supplier TVF Inc., an employee-owned firm.

"As an employee-owned holding company, we help companies like Paramount by providing a relatively easy buyout process that results in the employees joining our diversified ESOP," Empowered President and CEO Chris Fredericks said in the release.

Paramount co-founder Rex Lim added that selling the firm "has been a bittersweet process for our family."

"Since starting Paramount nearly 40 years ago, we've worked hard to build a business on which so many employees and customers depend," he said. "We are very happy to have found a buyer…that will look out for Paramount and the people we care about for the long-term."

Paramount General Manager Curtis Elliot has been named president of the firm.

"With Empowered Ventures' support and the continuing dedication of Paramount's employees, together, we will keep growing the business and meeting the ever-evolving needs of our customers," Elliot said.

Empowered Vice President Spencer Springer added that when employees become owners, "they immediately become more engaged, invested, and strategic."

"Succession planning can be an overwhelming process," he said. "Working with Empowered Ventures enables an owner to sell their business while confidently leaving it in the hands of those who know it best — an ideal scenario for a company like Paramount."

» Publication Date: 13/12/2021

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