PE-backed Kraco buys Auto Expressions

Kraco Enterprises, a portfolio company of Sun Capital Partners, a private equity firm based in Boca Raton, FL, has completed the acquisition of Auto Expressions, a California-based automobile accessories company. Auto Expressions was bought from Pennzoil-Quaker State Company (doing business as SOPUS Products), which is itself owned by Shell Oil. The terms of the transaction were not disclosed.


Sun Capital Partners, Inc. (“Sun Capital”), a leading private investment firm specializing in leveraged buyouts and investments in market-leading companies, today announced that its affiliate, Kraco Enterprises, has completed the acquisition of Auto Expressions, which was announced on June 9, 2010. Auto Expressions, headquartered in Moorpark, California, was previously the automotive aftermarket accessories business of Pennzoil-Quaker State Company dba SOPUS Products, a subsidiary of Shell Oil Company. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

“We are pleased with progress at Kraco Enterprises and will continue to seek out opportunities that allow us to build out the company’s leading market position in aftermarket automotive accessories,” said Anthony Polazzi, Principal at Sun Capital Partners. “The addition of category leaders such as Auto Expressions position Kraco favorably by allowing the Company to provide a full range of high quality innovative products to both new and existing clients.”

“I deeply appreciate the outstanding efforts of everyone involved with the Kraco/Auto Expressions integration including the teams from Sun Capital Partners, Kraco, Edgewater Technology, and SOPUS Products,” said Bob Brocoff, Chief Executive Officer of Kraco Enterprises. “We are looking forward to completing this next milestone in our company’s growth and the benefits the integration will bring to our customer base. The synergy created by the two companies will allow for enhanced product development and streamlined customer touch points.”

Auto Expressions’ product line includes air fresheners, seat covers, sunshades, steering wheel covers, floor mats and auto organizers, with leading positions in the interior accessories and air care categories. In addition, the Auto Expressions business has a powerful licensing platform with demonstrated success in distributing products and has featured pop culture icon Ed Hardy® since 2008.

Sun Capital acquired Kraco Enterprises in August 2008. In addition to Kraco Enterprises, Sun Capital counts among its affiliated portfolio companies a number of other businesses serving the automotive market, such as Powertrain Products, Vari-Form, ThermaSys Corporation, NFP Steering DriveSol, and Pace American. The firm places strong emphasis on in–house operational expertise, and partners closely with the management teams of its portfolio companies to grow their businesses and improve their operations.

Sawaya Segalas & Co., LLC(1), a leading consumer investment banking firm, acted as exclusive financial adviser to SOPUS Products in connection with the transaction.

(1) Securities offered through Sawaya Segalas Securities, LLC

About Kraco Enterprises, LLC

Kraco Enterprises is the leading distributor of automotive aftermarket floor mats including cargo floor mats for vehicle, home, and shop use. Founded in 1954, Kraco operates a 400,000-square-foot facility in Compton, California, with more than 3 million cubic feet of palletized top quality floor mats ready to ship. Products are distributed to more than 15,000 auto supply and general merchandise retail stories in the U.S. and Canada.

About Auto Expressions

Auto Expressions® is a branded line of quality automotive air care and accessories products, available in the auto section of many major retail chains around the world. The Auto Expressions® name appears on a wide variety of consumer car-care products that include air fresheners, seat covers, sunshades, steering wheel covers, floor mats, organizers, and more. Auto Expressions products are marketed by Pennzoil-Quaker State Company dba SOPUS Products. Auto Expressions is headquartered in Moorpark, California, and has offices in Manchester, United Kingdom, and Hong Kong.

About Sun Capital Partners, Inc.

Sun Capital Partners, Inc. is a leading private investment firm focused on leveraged buyouts, equity, debt, and other investments in companies that can benefit from its in–house operating professionals and experience. Sun Capital affiliates have invested in more than 240 companies worldwide with combined sales in excess of $40 billion since Sun Capital’s inception in 1995. Sun Capital has offices in Boca Raton, Los Angeles, and New York, as well as affiliates with offices in London, Paris, Frankfurt, Luxembourg, Shanghai and Shenzhen. For more information, please visit