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Market Expansion for Flexible PVC Portfolio Division

For our private equity client, we provided industry expertise that advanced the plateauing sales performance of their portfolio company’s flexible PVC division.

The Challenge

In an industrial industry where loyalty runs deep with suppliers and manufacturers, our client’s portfolio company saw sales plateauing in their vinyl solutions division. The sales team needed the expertise and guidance to find new applications for their flexible PVC products, and a way to identify potential customers in unsaturated markets.

The management team, including the CEO and VP of Sales from the portfolio company, turned to us for expert input on market potential and direction for their division sales team.

Key Concerns

  • Find ways to identify new customers who currently use or have a need for flexible PVC solutions
  • Define the ideal profile for potential customers in untapped markets
  • Assess market entry and sales strategy for identified customer targets, with the goal to gather consistent leads
  • Evaluate the knowledge gaps hindering negotiation with sourcing professionals and original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) who use flexible PVC in their products.

The Search

Upon intake, our project team developed advisor evaluation criteria with our client and their portfolio management team. Eligible candidates needed to have specialized product experience with Flexible PVC. This was critical. Rigid PVC or other plastics materials were irrelevant; we needed industry leaders who could speak to the nuances, competitive landscape and forward market trends of a particular division.

Within 27 hours, we identified 24 industry leaders from four major competitors and adjacent industries. Further screening for sales and marketing executives, supply chain managers, and sourcing professionals we delivered a comprehensive array of advisors, fully vetted to ensure all the client’s existing knowledge gaps were addressed.

“It was the best interview I had done all year and we had our entire management team on the call. The quality of information we received from Apex Leaders’s advisor, I don’t think we could have gotten that anywhere else.”

Rob Hinckley
VP Sales and Marketing, TMI PVC

The Results

The management team engaged the advisor from their direct competitor, who lead the industry in the flexible PVC category. The advisor had doubled the company’s sales during her tenure and shared insights into how our client could capitalize on unique opportunities in the private and government sector previously unknown to them.  In addition, Apex Leaders sourced advisors for each additional diligence angle:

  • Former Sales & Operations Executive, Value Vinyls
  • Former CEO, Tencate Union Protective Fabrics
  • Former CEO, Shiekd Technologies Corporation
  • Vice President of Sales Operations, Chase Doors

The engagement was so thorough that the client’s management team closed the project, electing to continue working with this top advisor.

Last Word

For our client’s portfolio company, we helped them achieve a significant breakthrough in their stunted flexible PVC division sales. The management team continued to engage this advisor and explore the option of hiring her as a full-time partner for their portfolio’s sales team.