A reenergized company culture and a big growth plan for 2017 leaves high-visibility packaging industry leader Rohrer Corporation with one question: who will join them on this journey?
What entices you to buy a product? Often a quick Internet search or a friend’s recommendation leads you to the purchase, but a product’s packaging is the closer in this deal. Companies spend millions perfecting the look and feel of their brands, but they couldn’t do it without businesses like Rohrer Corporation.
Started as a small family business by John and David Rohrer in 1973, Rohrer Corporation has grown to have five strategically located manufacturing facilities throughout the U.S. As a historic leader in several core markets, the company has provided printing and plastic solutions in the high-visibility packaging industry for over 40 years.
“Very few people have been in this industry for as long as we have,” shared Steve Wirrig, President and CEO of Rohrer Corporation. “There’s an immediate recognition and trust with our brand.”
2017 is set to be Rohrer’s year. Wirrig came on board in April of 2016 to focus the executive team and the rest of the company on accelerating a cultural change that had been underway since the business transitioned ownership from the Rohrer’s to ShoreView Industries, a Minneapolis-based private equity firm focused on middle-market companies.
“When I joined there were 100 great ideas of what the business should do going forward,” Wirrig said. “And while the ideas were there, there was a lot of analysis and not enough action and focus. We quickly boiled down a list of decisions, made those decisions, and have stood behind them.”
Internal structural issues were resolved, and a few layers of positions and procedures were peeled back to free up the room for, as Wirrig said, “people to go out and do their job.”
“The last six months were the destruction phase: now we know where to go, and are moving into the construction phase. Our culture is creating a positive energy around the whole transition. It’s led by the idea that each day presents every single employee with the opportunity to support one another. It’s hard not to have a fun, energized culture with this attitude.”
Before committing to this cultural evolution, each facility was run relatively independently, with slightly different policies and procedures governing the work done there. Today, the company’s goal of growth is supported by collaborative efforts throughout all locations.
The continued success and the transition to a reenergized and centralized culture can be attributed to Rohrer Corporation’s divestiture in 2009 to private equity firm Shoreview Industries. At the time, Rohrer had three sites and $70 million in revenue. The organic growth was there but the new team, including the original owners as board members for their advisorial expertise, wanted to take the business to the next level.
The integration of multiple acquisitions, including the recent acquisition of major competitor CardPak, into the company have turned Rohrer into the multi-site business it is now and propelled them far beyond any competitor in the industry. Acquisitions—which Wirrig and his team handle more as mergers rather than takeovers—are one cornerstone of the leadership team’s strategy for growth and success going forward.
“We believe the high-visibility packaging industry is poised for additional consolidation. It remains a fragmented industry; some companies providing just printing, some just thermoforming; some just heat seal machinery. And many of them will see organic success in the market.
“But as the industry matures and price pressure from retailers increases, a company that can offer a single source for printing, thermoforming, and heat seal machinery distribution, resulting in shorter lead times, more flexibility and ease of doing business, will have the upper hand.”
“We want to continue to build a great business,” Wirrig said. “Rohrer is ready for acquisition growth, and we are very well supported by our financial structure and private equity owners. There are several different businesses and ownership models we believe will complement us very well.”
Rohrer Corporation is laser focused on making 2017 a great year for growth, change, and reenergizing. Though only time will tell just who will partner with Rohrer through future acquisitions, Rohrer's intentions are clear: they will continue to lead the industry.
Cutting-edge technology and a commitment to our customers have kept Rohrer Corporation at the forefront of the high-visibility packaging industry for over 40 years. We have become our customers’ single source for the highest quality products and best service in the business.
But we didn’t get there just by being hi-tech: we continually strive for zero defects, 100 percent on-time delivery, and total customer satisfaction. Thanks in large part to our staff of dedicated, knowledgeable employees and the efficient use of state-of-the-art equipment, we are reaching our goals.
At Rohrer, quality is an integral part of every production process, so attaining these goals will increase productivity, continue our competitive position in the marketplace, and ensure our success in the future.
We are a dynamic and well-established company and employer that applies eco-friendly practices to all aspects of our operations. Our environmentally-conscious background didn’t begin because of a movement; it’s how we decided to do business long ago.
Rohrer aims to be recognized as the most customer-focused packaging provider in the industry. Our vast experience, pride for our products and passion for what we do provides not only a better package, it provides the complete package.