Private equity firm acquires majority stake in manufacturer


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A local maker of sterile vials and syringes has a new out-of-state majority owner.

Grand Rapids-based Grand River Aseptic Manufacturing, or GRAM, said this week Chevy Chase, Maryland-based Arlington Capital Partners has acquired a majority stake in the company.

Existing shareholders, who are private investors from the industry and the Grand Rapids area, will continue to hold the minority stake in the company.

GRAM had 2016 revenue of $19.1 million and has 160 employees.

“With the health care network, strategic vision and capital that Arlington brings to GRAM, we look forward to expanding our offerings and capacity and continuing to invest in best-in-class technology,” said Tom Ross, CEO, GRAM.

Founded in 2011, GRAM develops, makes, tests and provides regulatory filing support for sterile parenteral vials, syringes and other products for the life science and pharmaceutical industries.

Parenteral refers to medicinal solutions administered somewhere in the body other than the mouth or alimentary canal, including injections or infusions that are intravenous (into a vein), subcutaneous (under the skin) or intramuscular (into muscle).

Among other things, the investment from Arlington Capital will provide funding for GRAM to meet rising demand for its parenteral development and manufacturing services in many sectors of the injectables market, including biologics and generics.

Matt Altman, a managing partner at Arlington, said the investment in GRAM supports his firm’s diversification strategy.

“(GRAM’s) broad manufacturing experience and exemplary quality record provide an ideal platform from which to pursue the numerous growth initiatives we have collectively identified within the large and growing aseptic manufacturing market,” Altman said.

“Our investment in GRAM continues Arlington’s history of building differentiated pharma services providers in partnership with leading management teams.”

GRAM landed at No. 572 on Inc. magazine’s 2017 “Inc. 5000” list of the country’s fastest-growing private companies, making it West Michigan’s No. 5 fastest-growing private company and fastest-growing private health company, with a three-year growth rate of 791 percent.

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