Customized Solutions. Superior Execution.
Unparalleled Results.

Western Reserve’s professionals have extensive experience in the automotive industry, having completed 69 transactions at a collective value of over $6 billion in the following sectors:


  • Aftermarket
  • Original Equipment
  • Distribution
  • Manufacturing
  • Automation
  • Retail and Services
  • Specialty Vehicles


  • Air and Fluid
  • Drivetrain and Powertrain
  • Electrical
  • Exterior and Body
  • Interior Components and Assemblies


  • Metal
  • Rubber
  • Plastic
  • Electronics
  • Engineered Materials


 Market Updates

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Representative Experience


Western Reserve Partners, a division of Citizens Capital Markets Inc., acted as exclusive financial advisor to Creative Foam Corporation (“Creative Foam”) in its recapitalization by Industrial Opportunity Partners (“IOP”), the company’s existing shareholders and management.

Creative Foam, founded in 1969 by Dr. Peter T. Swallow and based in Fenton, Michigan, is a manufacturer and supplier of custom engineered die cut, formed foam, nonwoven, and multi-material component solutions to the automotive, medical, and wind energy markets. Its thirteen manufacturing facilities, two warehouses, and engineering center are located across North America, including in Michigan, Indiana, Colorado, Ohio, Tennessee, Florida, and Mexico, and feature over one million square feet of production space.

IOP, an Evanston, Ill.-based private equity firm with $910 million of committed capital since inception, is dedicated to creating value through investing in manufacturing and value-added distribution businesses with sales between $30 million and $350 million. IOP focuses on businesses with strong product, customer, and market positions, and provides management and operational resources to support sales and earnings growth at its businesses.

David T. Swallow, President of Creative Foam, commented, “We truly appreciate the exceptional guidance Western Reserve provided to our team throughout the transaction process. Western Reserve’s insight, market knowledge, attention to detail and relentless effort at every step of the process were of great benefit to us and were vital to the success of this transaction. We are excited to partner with IOP, whose knowledge and resources will enhance Creative Foam’s continued growth and ability to support our customers.”

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The testimonials presented are applicable to the individuals depicted and may not be representative of the experience of others.  The testimonials are not paid and are not indicative of future performance or success.


Western Reserve acted as exclusive financial advisor to Nitrofill, LLC in its recapitalization by Kinderhook Industries, LLC and Nitrofill’s Chief Executive Officer Jay Lighter. Nitrofill was previously owned by affiliates of Crystal Ridge Partners and Mr. Lighter.

Headquartered in Pompano Beach, FL, Nitrofill is a leading developer and marketer of patented nitrogen generation and inflation systems for passenger and truck tires as well as related tire warranties, customer benefit programs and reseller customer retention programs. Nitrofill’s flagship product offering is a Tire Protection Plan program, sold primarily to and through new car dealerships, leveraging the Company’s patented nitrogen tire inflation product and unique product warranty, which includes: tire repair and replacement coverage, roadside assistance and other benefits, a comprehensive CRM solution to increase customer traffic and tire and service sales while providing significant value to end user consumers.

Of working with Western Reserve, CEO of Nitrofill, Jay Lighter said, “We are thrilled with the outcome of this transaction and I am excited to be partnered with Kinderhook. We appreciate the extraordinary service and direction we received from Western Reserve. There is no doubt that we chose the right team to guide us throughout this important  process.”

. . .

The testimonials presented are applicable to the individuals depicted and may not be representative of the experience of others.  The testimonials are not paid and are not indicative of future performance or success.


Western Reserve Partners served as exclusive financial advisor to A.R.E. Accessories, LLC (“A.R.E.”), a portfolio company of Crystal Ridge Partners and Defiance Partners, in its sale to Tectum Holdings, Inc. (“THI”), a portfolio company of TA Associates, LLC.

Headquartered in Massillon, Ohio, A.R.E is the world’s single largest selling brand of highly engineered, custom-made fiberglass and aluminum truck caps and tonneau covers, widely regarded as having the highest quality and broadest product line in the market today.  A.R.E. operates from three manufacturing locations in Ohio and a distribution center in Nevada.  The facilities utilize state-of-the-art equipment, production processes and environmental emission controls earning ISO 9001 certification in 2001.  With over 45 years of experience, A.R.E. has a highly developed network of independent dealers who rely on the company to provide product custom made to exact order specifications and delivered within two to three weeks.

Headquartered in Ann Arbor, Michigan, THI is a leading supplier of branded light duty truck accessories for pickup truck bed applications.  Since its formation, THI has grown organically and via acquisition from two tonneau brands into a diverse portfolio of seven major tonneau brands and a premier bed liner brand.

Of working with Western Reserve, Crystal Ridge Partners Managing Principal Don Hofmann said, “We appreciate the tremendous dedication and industry expertise Western Reserve provided in the process, which resulted in a successful outcome for the shareholders and provided an ideal partner for the A.R.E. team.”

“We are quite excited to join the THI family and to join a company known throughout the industry for innovation and quality, values that have been with A.R.E. since its founding more than 45 years ago. On behalf of everybody at A.R.E., I would like to thank the Western Reserve team for their assistance and guidance throughout the sale process.  Their direction and relentless effort throughout the process was truly top notch,” said Todd Hoffman, A.R.E.’s President and CEO.

. . .

The testimonials presented are applicable to the individuals depicted and may not be representative of the experience of others.  The testimonials are not paid and are not indicative of future performance or success.



Western Reserve Partners served as the exclusive investment banker to Stoneridge, Inc. (NYSE: SRI) in the sale of its Wiring Business segment assets to Motherson Sumi Systems Limited (BSE: 517334). Western Reserve served as primary facilitator to Stoneridge in this transaction.

Stoneridge’s Wiring Business designs and manufactures wiring harness products for sale principally to the commercial, agricultural and off-highway vehicle markets, as well as assembles entire instrument panels that are configured specifically to an OEM customer’s specifications in the commercial vehicle market.  Included in the transaction are six manufacturing facilities located in Portland, Indiana; Chihuahua, Mexico; Saltillo, Mexico; and Monclova, Mexico; as well as an engineering and administrative center located in Warren, Ohio.

Motherson Sumi Systems is a manufacturer of diversified products for the global automotive industry having manufacturing operations in 25 countries.

John Corey, President and CEO of Stoneridge, commented, “The Western Reserve team provided us with a high level of service in completing  the transaction process and were  helpful in offering  advice that facilitated our ability to reach agreement on the transaction.”

. . .

The testimonials presented are applicable to the individuals depicted and may not be representative of the experience of others.  The testimonials are not paid and are not indicative of future performance or success.


Western Reserve Partners served as exclusive financial advisor to Vita Nonwovens, LLC, a portfolio company of CapitalSouth Growth Fund and Crutchfield Capital, LLC, in its sale to Industrial Opportunity Partners.

Based in High Point, North Carolina, Vita is a leading manufacturer of high-performance, durable nonwoven materials, including flame retardants, thermal/acoustical insulation, filtration and medical products. Vita operates three facilities strategically located throughout the United States and specializes in engineered applications utilizing nonwoven thermal bonding and needlepunch capabilities, as well as die cutting and laminating operations.

Of working with Western Reserve, Crutchfield CEO and Vita Chairman Elliott Crutchfield said, “We appreciated Western Reserve’s dedication to the transaction and their focus on managing an efficient process. We have enjoyed witnessing Vita’s significant growth over the past several years and are happy that management has a good partner to support the Company with its continued growth.”

. . .

The testimonials presented are applicable to the individuals depicted and may not be representative of the experience of others.  The testimonials are not paid and are not indicative of future performance or success.



Western Reserve Partners served as the exclusive financial advisor to Myers Industries, Inc. (NYSE: MYE) in the sale of WEK Industries, Inc. to Toledo Molding & Die, Inc. (“TMD”), a portfolio company of private equity firm Industrial Opportunity Partners.

WEK Industries is a provider of engineered blow molded components and assemblies to the automotive industry.  With locations in Jefferson, Ohio and Reidsville, North Carolina, WEK was a part of Myers Industries’ Engineered Products Segment.

TMD is a full-service automotive supplier that designs, develops and manufactures highly engineered thermoplastic components and assemblies, including interior cockpit modules and air and fluid management products.  TMD has approximately 1,500 employees and operates out of eight facilities in Ohio.

Other Automotive Clients

  • ADESA Inc.

    Wholesale auctioneer of used automobiles

    $23 million initial public offering of common stock

  • Brittany Stamping

    Manufacturer of stamped metal products for the automotive, heavy-duty truck, HVAC and refrigeration industries

    Sold certain assets to: North American Stamping Group LLC (Ontario, Canada)

  • Dan T. Moore Company, Inc.

    Western Reserve acted as exclusive financial advisor to Dan T. Moore Company, Inc. in its acquisition of Delaware Machinery and Tool Company, Inc.

    Dan T. Moore Company, Inc., founded in 1969 and based in Cleveland, Ohio, is an R&D and acquisition entity and business incubator focused on the industrial sector.

    Delaware Machinery and Tool Company, Inc., founded in 1938 and based in Muncie, Indiana, is a leader in the full service design, engineering, manufacturing, testing and sampling of highly complex tools utilized to manufacture die cast components for the automotive, defense, medical and other industrial markets.

    Delaware was placed into receivership by the Delaware County Circuit Court after defaulting with its senior lender.  Western Reserve assisted Dan T. Moore Company in rapidly preparing a bid model and developing a bid strategy.  Through numerous discussions with Delaware’s receiver, senior creditors and legal parties, Dan T. Moore Company was able to develop and present a detailed model to receive pre-approved financing  and credibly bid on Delaware’s assets.  At the December 2010 auction, Dan T. Moore Company topped the stalking horse bid and was declared the new owner of Delaware Machinery and Tool Company.

  • Dekko Wire, Inc.

    Manufacturer of automotive wire at four plants in Alabama and Texas

    Sold to: International Wire Group, Inc. (St. Louis, MO), a portfolio company of Hicks, Muse, Tate & Furst (Dallas, TX); provided fairness opinion

  • Drop Dies & Forgings Company

    Manufacturer of high quality, specialty forgings from difficult to forge metals serving aerospace, heavy-duty trucks, and other markets

    Sold to: Precision Castparts Corporation (Portland, OR)
  • Hawk Corporation

    Diversified manufacturer of specialized components for industrial, commercial, automotive and aerospace markets

    $100 million initial public offering of common stock

  • Highland Group Industries (portfolio company of Linsalata Capital Partners)

    Brand of cargo management and vehicle protection products

    Sold to: Trimas Corp. (Bloomfield Hills, MI)
  • Interstate SouthWest (portfolio company of Balmoral Advisors LLC)

    Manufacturer of large, complex forgings for the automotive, heavy machinery and energy markets

    Sold to: Ellwood Group, Inc. (Ellwood City, PA)

  • Magnesium Aluminum Co.

    Tier II supplier of die cast magnesium and aluminum components to the automotive industry

    Sold to: Monomoy Capital Partners (New York, NY)

  • Wiseco Piston Company Inc.

    Manufacturer of high performance pistons for automotive, motorcycle, marine racing and aftermarket applications

    Sold to: Dover Diversified, Inc. (New York, NY)