Ranir acquires Plackers brand

January 15, 2009
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Ranir LLC, a 400-employee dental device company in Kentwood, has announced the acquisition of Placontrol Inc. of San Diego.

Placontrol’s major product under the Plackers brand name is a plastic flossing device, said Ranir CFO Joe Townshend. He said Ranir intends to retain and build on the brand, which is widely sold in retail chains such as Wal-Mart, CVS, Walgreens, Rite Aid, Dollar Tree and Kroger, as well as in 30 other countries.

“What’s important is they have a brand called Plackers. That’s the important feature of this acquisition — the brand Plackers,” Townshend said.

He said the acquisition is Ranir’s first time at marketing its own brand of oral devices, other than a small control brand, which is not promoted.

“It’s in our area of expertise,” Townshend said of Plackers. “It’s a nice brand that we think we can build upon. It meets our strategies. That company had great customer service, great innovation, great quality. It’s all about those features that attracted us.”

Ranir manufactures and markets private label dental supplies, such as tooth-whitening wraps, whitening trays, dissolving whitening strips, manual and power toothbrushes, dental floss and flossers, travel kits, night protectors and other items for oral care.

“We supply the retailer their branded product: CVS, Rite Aid, Walgreens,” Townshend said.

Ranir and Placontrol are both private companies and terms were not disclosed.

Ranir’s management, including Townshend and CEO Christine Henisee, will remain intact. Placontrol founder Ingram Chodorow will join Ranir’s board of directors, and Devin and Brett Chodorow will join the management team, but be based in San Diego, Townshend said.

Ranir is controlled by Kayak Holdings LLC, which acquired a majority interest in the firm from Linden LLC last year. Both are private investment firms located in Chicago. Kayak chairman is Richard P. Kiphart, who heads corporate finance at Chicago investment bank William Blair & Co.

Placontrol began retail sales from its California base in 1984, and started out by licensing its patents. In 2000, it became a direct marketer and distributor of Plackers.

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