Uniflex Bought By Connecticut Investment Firm
Uniflex Inc. (asi/92480) has been purchased by a Greenwich, CT, investment capital firm in a deal that was approved by federal bankruptcy court Tuesday. The investment firm, Brynwood Partners, has installed a new CEO, Vince Schaller, who had been an executive with the parent company of Counselor Top 40 supplier Cenveo. The new company will be known as Uniflex Holdings to distinguish it from Uniflex Estates, the company that will continue in bankruptcy proceedings until creditor issues are resolved. “Because of Brynwood’s investment, Uniflex is 100% debt free,”
Schaller says. “Uniflex has significant funds added to its cashflow and will be getting an additional influx of capital from Brynwood to upgrade equipment, upgrade capabilities, ensure good vendor relationships and, most importantly, to focus on customers and customer care.” Uniflex is planning to overhaul its manufacturing equipment, increase service levels and expand the product line, Schaller says.
AIA To Stop Issuing New Franchises Because Of Accounting Rules Adventures In Advertising (asi/109480) will stop selling new franchises in 2005 as a result of a federal accounting rule that was passed after the Enron debacle, says David Woods, CEO of the franchising operation. The new rules, dubbed Fin 46 by the accounting community, states that companies that provide a significant amount of financing for another incorporated company must include that company’s financial records in its financial reporting. “If we wanted to comply with Fin 46, [franchisees] would have to provide us with audited financial statements in a timely fashion,” Woods explained. “They’d have to give us their sales, profits, leases, costs, any bank loans, any equity interest and, in some cases, they might actually have to give us their tax returns.” AIA’s existing 350 franchises are grandfathered from the rules, but creating new franchises would be problematical. Existing owners, however, will continue to be able to renew their franchises, grow them by hiring reps and sell them to new owners, Woods says, adding that AIA might eventually add reps who don’t have a franchise relationship.
Falcon Rule Update As we noted a few issues back, the promotional products division of Falcon Inc. (asi/53530) has been acquired in an asset purchase resulting from an affiliation between Leonard Hornstein, CEO of Avaline (asi/37590), and Scott A. Nussinow, MAS, Falcon president. No other details were released. The firm’s name will become Falcon Promotional Products, and Nussinow will remain as president. All employees and operations will also be retained. “Scott and I have known each other for years, and we both realized this move would be an asset to both Falcon and Avaline,” Hornstein says. “Things will remain status quo for year one, but it’s likely we’ll be doing some cross-selling down the road.” Nussinow explains that the main impetus behind the decision to sell the promotional products division was based on changes in the marketplace. “The largest change was in the school and office-product market, which was slowing down and creating a drag on the entire company,” he says. “Rather than let that happen, we felt it was better to spin off certain assets, including promotional products, which is growing and healthy. I respect Len deeply and think this will make for a stronger company and better overall package for distributors. Our vision now is to build on our customer base and core business competencies. We want to look very aggressively at all opportunities to expand our product offerings.”
ASI Forms Exclusive Relationship with Technologo
The Advertising Specialty Institute (asi/33020) has announced an agreement with Technologo, a virtual sampling specialist, to offer up to a 40% discount on virtual sampling services to ASI members. Virtual sampling revolutionizes how distributors and suppliers communicate and sell. Distributors can search for promotional products using ESP Online or other online search engines, then use Technologo to place a client’s logo on the item. Once complete, the sample image is e-mailed to the client for approval and order placement. Distributors can use Technologo Collection, a library of “virtually-enabled” products from leading suppliers, at www.technologo.com, to create 3-D virtual samples at no charge. Specialized software isn’t necessary.
Professional Service Clients? Do you work with service professionals such as lawyers, doctors, real estate agents, accountants, stock brokers, veterinarians or funeral directors? Counselor is preparing for an upcoming feature story on the professional services market and would love to hear from you. If you want to share your experience and expertise, please contact Matt Histand at: Mhistand@asicentral.com
People On the Move Dart Manufacturing Co. (asi/48520) has named Dale Baur vice president of sales.
CPS (asi/43051) has named Rebecca Czzowitz a regional sales associate.
ASI (asi/33020) has named Phil Vu assistant manager/ASItransact; Dave Russo executive director/distributor sales; Heather DiPrato senior director of national account development; Bob Schreiber and Joe Fleming senior account executives; and Don Mennig marketing manager/electronic research products.
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