PE-backed SVP Worldwide hires Block as CEO

Sewing machine company SVP Worldwide has appointed Paul Block as CEO. Previously, Block was the president, CEO and board chairman of Merisant Worldwide Inc. SVP Worldwide is backed by Kohlberg & Company.


HAMILTON, BERMUDA–(Marketwired – Jan 18, 2016) – SVP Worldwide, a global leader in the sewing industry and source of the SINGER®, HUSQVARNA VIKING® and PFAFF® sewing machine collections, announced that Paul Block has been appointed the Company’s Chief Executive Officer. Mr. Block assumes this role from Richard Jenkins, who has served as interim CEO over the past year.

With more than 30 years in the consumer products industry, Mr. Block is an experienced brand builder with a proven track record of driving growth of product lines globally through innovation, strategic marketing, and new channel development. Mr. Block joins SVP Worldwide with an extensive track record of senior leadership experience across the consumer products industry, most recently as President, CEO and Chairman of the Board of Merisant Worldwide, Inc., a global consumer packaged goods enterprise. Prior to his tenure with Merisant, Mr. Block was the President and CEO of Retail Coffee USA for Sara Lee Corporation and held various executive roles with Allied Domecq PLC, Groupe Danone, and several other consumer products companies.

“I am thrilled to join the global consumer sewing leader with brands holding unparalleled heritage in the industry,” commented Mr. Block. “SVP Worldwide’s brands each have over 140 years of history and are known for their quality, craftsmanship and state-of-the-art innovation. I am excited to build upon this heritage by continuing to deliver machines and software that provide a best-in-class sewing experience. Further, I look forward to driving growth for SVP Worldwide’s customers around the globe by delivering dealers and retailers the tools to drive their businesses and through providing innovative new products that offer high quality and ease of use.”

Evan Wildstein, Partner of Kohlberg & Company, L.L.C., which through affiliated funds is the majority shareholder of SVP Worldwide, added: “On behalf of the Board of Directors of SVP Worldwide, I wish to sincerely thank Mr. Jenkins for his distinguished service to the company. Mr. Jenkins was instrumental in driving operational excellence to build a strong platform for continued growth at SVP Worldwide. With this transition, SVP Worldwide is fortunate to have an executive with Mr. Block’s leadership skills and brand building expertise, and we look forward with confidence to his role in leading the company forward. He is committed to launching new products that enhance consumer experience and provide best-in-class functionality through technology, thoughtful design and top quality, as well as continuing to expand SVP Worldwide’s global reach.”

About SVP Worldwide
SVP Worldwide is the world’s largest sewing machine company and source of the SINGER®, HUSQVARNA VIKING® and PFAFF® sewing machine collections. As a global leader doing business through its affiliated companies in over 190 countries, SVP Worldwide specializes in the design, manufacture and distribution of high quality consumer and artisan sewing, quilting and embroidery machines, accessories and notions. For more information about SVP Worldwide and its brands please visit:,, and

About Kohlberg & Company
Kohlberg & Company is a leading private equity firm headquartered in Mount Kisco, New York. Since its inception in 1987, Kohlberg has organized seven private equity funds, through which it has raised over $5 billion of committed equity capital. Over its 28-year history, Kohlberg has completed 65 platform investments and over 140 add-on acquisitions, with an aggregate transaction value of approximately $10 billion. For more information, please visit