News Column

Paine & Partners Makes Strategic Investment in QC Corporation, Micronutrients and Ferrous Sulfate Specialist

May 29, 2014

By a News Reporter-Staff News Editor at Agriculture Week -- Paine & Partners, LLC ("Paine & Partners"), a global private equity investment firm focused on investing in food and agribusiness, announced that it has made a strategic investment in QC Corporation ("QC"), a leading producer and supplier of granular and dry micronutrients and ferrous sulfate products. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Founded by Don Gordon in 1971, QC began as a producer and supplier of ferrous sulfate, and today is one of the largest processors of moist and dried ferrous sulfate products in North America. Family owned and operated for 42 years, QC is the only domestic producer of all forms of technical and agricultural grade ferrous sulfate in North America. The Company's ferrous sulfate products and state-of-the-art manufacturing and processing system for moist ferrous sulfate continue to set the standard for the industry. QC currently has two independent ferrous sulfate operations, located in Cape Girardeau, MO and North Lima, OH. Ferrous sulfate has applications in fertilizers and animal feed, soil remediation and land reclamation, hazardous waste and water treatment, and chemical process industries, to name a few.

After successfully launching its granular ferrous sulfate products in the early 1990s, QC built a new state of the art bulk blending compaction granulation plant in 2000, and began producing a variety of granular micronutrients. The Company completed a major expansion in 2013, and QC now operates a highly innovative micronutrient business with significant growth potential, with two independent compaction granulation facilities located in Missouri. In addition to offering its own line of granulated fertilizer micronutrients, QC offers custom manufacturing and toll processing of granulated materials, utilizing its more than 25 years of expertise in compaction granulation technology. QC is one of the few micronutrient producers that can offer 100 percent water solubility in homogeneous, low dust, custom granular micronutrient formulations. Granular products also include various micronutrient combinations of sulfates, chelates, sucrates, oxysulfates and oxides, along with the capability to incorporate and granulate humates and other biostimulants with various NPK fertilizer ingredients. QC's products help achieve better plant health and yields in lawn and garden, golf course, turf and ornamental, professional horticulture, crop production and agricultural applications.

The Gordon family will continue to lead the day-to-day operations of the business. Don Gordon has been appointed Chairman of the Company. Jason Gordon, Don's son, has been appointed Chief Executive Officer. Jason has almost 20 years of experience working at QC and has served as the Company's President, Chief Operating Officer, Chief Financial Officer, and Vice President of Sales & Marketing, among other roles.

"Paine & Partners is committed to providing QC with the necessary capital, expertise and resources to accelerate the granular micronutrient expansion strategy that is already in progress," said Don Gordon, Chairman. "Over the past forty years, we have built QC into a leading supplier of ferrous sulfate and granulated fertilizer micronutrients. We believe our partnership with Paine & Partners will enhance our industry leading products while maintaining our Company's strong core values. I look forward to working with Paine & Partners and the entire QC team as we continue to build on our success."

Jason Gordon, CEO, stated, "The investment from Paine & Partners will facilitate our continued growth and help us reach our goals across the business, particularly in granular micronutrients. Paine & Partners has a strong background in agribusiness and plant nutrition, and we look forward to taking the business to the next level with them. I look forward to leading the company and maintaining our tradition of offering best-in-class products and outstanding customer service, which have been the cornerstones of QC's success. As a company, we remain committed to our philosophy of strategic partnerships, while helping our suppliers and customers achieve continued success through innovation that we can provide."

Angelos Dassios, Partner of Paine & Partners, said, "Our investment in QC provides a platform for the Company to enhance its already exceptional products and accelerate its growth trajectory. We see tremendous potential in QC's granular micronutrients business and believe QC can leverage cross-portfolio synergies from our agribusiness companies, specifically Verdesian Life Sciences, LLC, which focuses on plant health and specialty nutrition. We look forward to working with QC to capitalize on new market opportunities and realize QC's significant potential."

Related to the transaction, QC and Paine & Partners worked with SDA Ventures LLC (SDA), a strategic consulting firm focused on the health and wellness and nutrition sectors. Kevin Schwartz, President of Paine & Partners, stated, "We have a long-term relationship with Steve Dubin and David Abramson, the principals at SDA and former CEO and President of Martek Biosciences. Through their relationship with Don Gordon, we were introduced to QC and became excited about its opportunities for growth. SDA contributed strongly to our successful completion of this transaction."

Keywords for this news article include: Agribusiness, Agricultural, Paine & Partners Llc, Investment and Finance.

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Source: Agriculture Week