Thermal Components Firm in Howell Acquired, Eyes Global Expansion

A Howell-based company looks to grow its capacity to produce materials for high-temperature industrial applications based on its acquisition by a global leader.
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Rex Materials Group
Howell’s Rex Materials Group has been acquired by Unifrax in New York. // Photo courtesy of Rex Materials Group

A Howell-based company looks to grow its capacity to produce materials for high-temperature industrial applications based on its acquisition by a global leader.

Looking to expand high-temperature insulation to molten metal handling systems to specialty heaters, Rex Materials Group in Howell has been acquired by New York’s Unifrax. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Rex Materials Group produces components from a range of materials, thicknesses, and densities. The vacuum-formed shapes are available in both small quantities and large bulk orders to match customers’ exact specifications with no waste.

“Our relationship with Unifrax spans more than 30 years,” says David Rex, president of Rex Materials. “We’re excited to become part of Unifrax, and we are confident that the combination of our two businesses will allow us to accelerate growth and build upon our legacy of customer service, product quality, and focused attention to solve customers’ high temperature needs.”

Unifrax produces high-performance specialty fibers and inorganic materials used in high temperature industrial, filtration, battery, and fire protection applications.

“This acquisition represents another step in the continued implementation of our long-term growth strategy and our focus on delivering energy efficient, environmentally friendly solutions around the world,” says John Dandolph, president and CEO of Unifrax.

“The addition of Rex Materials expands our portfolio of high temperature engineered thermal components, enhances our overall manufacturing capabilities, and supports our mission of creating a ‘greener, cleaner, and safer’ world. We are excited to add the Rex Materials team to our global Unifrax family and look forward to working together as we execute our compelling shared growth plan.”

Unifrax is backed by Clearlake Capital Group, a private investment firm based in California.

“Unifrax is successfully navigating the current environment, and we remain committed to supporting its strategic initiatives to drive innovation and market leadership,” José E. Feliciano, co-founder and managing partner at Clearlake, and Colin Leonard, partner at Clearlake, say in a joint statement.

“With this acquisition, Unifrax is well positioned to capitalize on the significant demand for high-temperature specialty material systems. We are excited to support the Unifrax management team as they drive consolidation in the industry and accelerate organic growth.”

Unifrax and its affiliates have 37 manufacturing facilities in the United States, Europe, the Middle East, Russia, Asia, South Africa, and Latin America. The company employs about 5,000 people.

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