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Wald Acquisition

Hills Numberplates Ltd Acquires John R Wald Company, Inc.

Birmingham, West Midlands:
Birmingham based number plate manufacturer Hills Numberplates Ltd. (Hills) announce acquisition of 100 percent of the privately held shares of American engineered systems integrator John R. Wald Company, Inc. (Wald) for an undisclosed sum.

Wald is a privately held company founded in 1924, located in Huntingdon, Pennsylvania. The business operates from a 15,000 sq ft facility with a work force of 26 people. In 93 years of business Wald has developed an established portfolio of license plate products, engineered systems and a remarkable reputation for their services. Wald is a division of Hills and will maintain its company name, brand and work force to continue operations. Eric E. Pizzuti has been recruited as the Chief Executive Officer of Wald with responsibility for the business in the Americas. Eric Pizzuti was formerly a Vice President of AstroNova, Inc. & General Manager of its QuickLabel group, the largest division. Through his 20 years of work with QuickLabel, he brings to Wald extensive experience from work with his team in the areas product identification, data visualization technology, digital color printing systems, industrial automation, software and materials science, including application-specific projects in the digital license plate segment since the 1990's.

This acquisition together with the acquisition of French market leader, Faab Fabricauto in 2015, has positioned Hills as the third largest number plate supplier in the world. Richard Taffinder, Hills Group Managing Director commented “Our own global leadership in the license plate industry and 90-years of experience, combined with our advanced manufacturing processes and well-established supply chain, will drive new and innovative license plate solutions as well as an expanded product portfolio that will satisfy the evolving needs of Wald customers and the wider market in the Americas and beyond." Mr. Taffinder continued, "With the union of these two financially sound industry leaders, our one company increases its market share significantly and can better leverage its combined teams, resources and know-how for the enhanced delivery of products and services to customers globally in both the public and private sectors."

 

Eric Pizutti  Michael Rodli and Richard Taffinder
Left to right: Eric Pizutti, CEO, Hills Numberplates US, Michael Rodli, JR Wald, Richard Taffinder, Group Managing Director, Hills Numberplates Ltd.

Funding for the acquisition has been provided through Natwest Commercial and Private Banking Team in Birmingham, Deal Team Lead Scott Peters. Scott Peters, Associate Director at NatWest, said: “It’s an exciting time for Hills Numberplates as they continue on their journey from being the largest national supplier of numberplates to one of the largest global suppliers. This acquisition is yet another great addition to compliment their existing business. The management team have done an exceptional job on delivering on the business’s strategy and we’re delighted to be able to support them in this acquisition. We look forward to supporting their future growth plans”. Legal and financial advice was provided by Irwin Mitchell, Birmingham, headed by Robert Laugharne and Mazars LLP, headed by David Preston.

About John R. Wald Company, Inc.
Established in 1924, Wald engineers, manufactures and sells globally a complete line of license plate manufacturing and digital printing systems and supplies; aluminum and reflective films components for the manufacture of license plates; industrial systems for the manufacture and packaging of jan-san products; metalworking and woodworking systems; institutional furniture and furniture components; and sign manufacturing. Wald's services include contract engineering, repair and parts support. From its inception, Wald has been an ardent supporter of the inmate rehabilitative efforts of correctional industries programs throughout the United States and is a major supporter of the National Correctional Industries Association (NCIA). The Rodli Award, honoring the contributions of its namesakes and former Wald Company presidents Gilbert E. Rodli and Robert E. Rodli, recognizes a correctional industries administrator who has made outstanding contributions to the correctional industries field and/or the NCIA during the course of his or her career.

About Hills Numberplates Ltd.
Hills Numberplates was incorporated in 1927 and trades primarily as a manufacturer of number plate components, ready-made registration plates and the latest number plate production systems. The company have developed a reputation as the acknowledged market leader in the UK in size, technology and innovation with their head office based in Birmingham, the manufacturing heart of the UK. Their modern facilities boast computerised production lines driven by a fully integrated order entry system, providing the capacity to produce over 8 million plates per annum. The company has consistently developed its capabilities to provide customers with high quality services and products whilst continuing to invest in the future. This has resulted in Hills holding a portfolio of worldwide patents, standards and awards for both number plate construction, manufacturing and quality systems.

 

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