"It's really a targeted acquisition strategy," Mike Huff, CEO of Citadel Plastics, told PlasticsToday. "We feel we're bringing a broader technology access to our customers and that's why Lucent was attractive to us, it strengthens our presence in the engineering thermoplastic space."
Over the past seven years, Lucent exceeded the industry's growth rate by more than 95%. In addition to continuing the manufacture of its existing products, Lucent will begin to produce Citadel's Matrixx, Aclo, QTR and Fiberfil brands. Huff said Lucent's customer base in automotive, electronics and others align with Citadel's business, and this acquisition also allows the company to expand into new markets such as sports and leisure and packaging.
Lucent is headquartered in Evansville, IN, where Citadel's thermoplastics division is also headquartered. Going forward, Lucent will be a subsidiary of Citadel and maintain its brand.
In other news, Citadel's composites thermoset business continues to grow as well and the company is in the process of establishing a second site in China.
"Our business in China, which is based around composites technology, is growing very strong this year - about 15 to 20% with strong penetration in the automotive market," he said. "The growth of automotive in China is an exciting space for us."
Besides Lucent, the other acquisitions included QTR Inc., which markets custom compounds based on recycled polycarbonate and other engineering thermoplastic; Fiberfil Engineered Plastics Inc., The Matrixx Group and BMCI. The full slate of companies is listed here.
Huff said he expects the company to have more acquisitions in 2014, either in North America or other parts of the world.
"We're excited about we're heading and we think we are building a very good company," he said. "We feel we have an excellent overall platform to build organically and with additional acquisitions."