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October 29, 2009

Charlesbank Capital Partners Acquires Five Consumer Products From McNeil-PPC

Charlesbank Capital Partners, LLC has announced the formation of Blacksmith Brands Inc. with the acquisition of five over-the-counter (OTC) consumer products brands from McNEIL-PPC, Inc.

The brands acquired by Blacksmith include: EFFERDENT® denture cleaner; EFFERGRIP® denture adhesive cream; LUDEN’S® throat drops; NASALCROM® nasal allergy relief spray; and PEDIACARE® children’s cough and cold medicine and Gentle Vapors waterless vaporizer. The top two brands in this portfolio, EFFERDENT® and LUDEN’S®, are market leaders in niche categories, and all five represent meaningful growth opportunities. Blacksmith Brands intends to invest significant advertising, promotion and sales efforts behind the brand portfolio and also expects to launch new items under the well-known trademarks.

Blacksmith is being created in partnership with industry veteran Peter Mann, who will serve as Chairman and CEO, and with private equity professional Dana Schmaltz, who will serve as CFO. With more than 35 years’ experience with consumer products, Mr. Mann was most recently CEO of Prestige Brands. He and his senior team at Blacksmith have worked together for more than 20 years, building numerous OTC brands. Mr. Schmaltz most recently was President of J.W. Childs Equity Partners LP.

“With Blacksmith, we have the opportunity to build on the extraordinary consumer awareness and trust of these market-leading brands, while also growing them through dedicated support and innovation,” said Mr. Mann. “We further believe that these five brands will be the foundation for a much larger company that will ultimately include other significant acquisitions.”

Mr. Schmaltz added, “We are delighted to have Charlesbank as a financial sponsor and are confident that, with their support, we can create a truly important OTC and personal care company.”

“We are thrilled to be partnering with Peter Mann, Dana Schmaltz and their deeply experienced team,” said Andrew Janower, Managing Director at Charlesbank. “With this talented group fully dedicated to these brands, we look forward to building the company into a scale player focused on OTC drugs and consumer products. We see great opportunity to grow the business organically, as well as through the acquisitions of additional heritage brands in need of revitalization.”

Sawaya Segalas & Co., LLC, a leading consumer investment banking firm, acted as exclusive financial advisor to Blacksmith in connection with the transaction. Debt capital for the transaction was provided by Ares Capital Corporation, the lead arranger, along with Keybank Capital Markets and GE Capital as co-lead arrangers.


Based in Boston and New York, Charlesbank Capital Partners is a middle-market private equity investment firm managing more than $2 billion of capital. Charlesbank focuses on management-led buyouts and growth capital financings, typically investing $50 million to $150 million per transaction in companies with enterprise values of $100 million to $750 million. The firm seeks to partner with strong management teams to build companies with sustainable competitive advantages and excellent prospects for growth. Visit for more information.

Customers, retailers or medical professionals with questions or comments about any of these brands can continue to utilize the existing product 800-numbers listed on product packaging or can visit each brand’s website which will remain active and supported.