Value-Added Distribution

GPA Holdings, Inc.

GPA Holdings, Inc.

Company Overview & Background

Founded in 1940 and headquartered in Chicago, IL, GPA Holdings, Inc. (“GPA”) is North America’s largest independent marketing and distribution organization dedicated to supplying pressure-sensitive label paper, films, and specialty substrates to the printing industry. In 2011, SC recapitalized the business in partnership with the GPA management team.

Investment Thesis

Leverage SC’s intimate knowledge of the business and industry experience in partnership with a proven management team.

Capitalize on GPA’s strong market position and relationships in high growth, niche product categories.

Enhance GPA’s long-term customer relationships, attractive margin structure and recurring revenue model to realize strong, consistent cash flow.

Build on GPA’s successful track record of identifying new product categories that match its core competencies of technical sales support, product availability and small order fulfillment.

SC Value Add

Recruited and hired Tom Brooker as CEO.

Supported management in expanding GPA’s sales and marketing capabilities to improve market share in under-penetrated geographic markets and customer segments.

Positioned GPA to capture growth from the digital segment’s growing market share in HP Indigo and digital toner.

Supported GPA in the acquisition of Utopia Digital Technologies, a provider of specialty coatings and solutions for digital printers based in New Berlin, WI.

Investment Highlights

Substantially grew revenue by expanding GPA’s product offering in the digital category.

Integrated purchased IP.

Expanded product lines and finishing capabilities with the purchase of new presses.

Collaborated with management to refine go to market strategy and quality of sales resources.


GPA was sold to The Fedrigoni Group (“Fedrigoni”) of Verona, Italy resulting in a successful outcome for all shareholders. With a history dating back to 1888, Fedrigoni is a leading provider of paper, security products and self-adhesive items to customers in over 80 countries worldwide. GPA management was familiar with Fedrigoni and with their desire to have a physical presence in the United States.

“SC played a critical role in building the business to what it is today. SC’s investment experience helped us identify and execute various growth initiatives culminating in broad interest for our business.”

Bob Niesen

President & CEO, GPA Holdings, Inc.