Frank Macher, Jon Smith Retire from Continental Structural Plastics; Steve Rooney Named CEO, Steve Wisniewski Promoted
Auburn Hills, Michigan – April 3, 2017 — Continental Structural Plastics (CSP), a world leader in light weight composite technologies, today announced the retirements of CEO Frank Macher and CFO Jon Smith, both effective April 1. Steve Rooney, formerly the company’s president and COO, has been named CEO, while Steve Wisniewski, controller, has been promoted to vice president, Finance.
The company’s new CEO, Steve Rooney, joined CSP as President and COO in 2011. He brings to the position more than thirty years of experience in the automotive manufacturing industry with expertise in manufacturing, operations management, multi-plant management and engineering. Prior to joining CSP, Rooney served as vice president of operations at Johnson Controls; vice president of operations at Plastic Engineered Products; plant manager at Baily Corporation/Venture Industries and materials manager at Barry Controls. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Management and Finance from the University of Massachusetts.
Steve Wisniewski, now vice president, Finance, had served as CSP’s corporate controller since 2013. Wisniewski brings nearly 25 years of experience in Finance to the job. Prior to joining CSP, he worked as director of Finance at GKN. Previous positions include financial analyst and performance manager at Teksid Aluminum; senior financial analyst at Delphi and analyst at EY. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Accounting and Psychology, from the University of Michigan.
“As we move to the next chapter with CSP as part of Teijin, I am excited to be taking the reins,” said Rooney. “We have a tremendous opportunity ahead of us as we combine the significant expertise of our two companies to develop the next generation of lightweight materials for our customers. We will certainly miss Frank and Jon, but they built a strong team and we’re ready to take CSP into the future.”
Macher, who joined CSP in 2010, played a key role in turning CSP into the successful and innovative Tier One supplier the company is today. It was through his vision that CSP built up its R&D capabilities to develop the award-winning, lightweighting technologies for which CSP is known. He led the company to global growth and significant profitability, culminating in the 2017 sale of CSP to Teijin. CSP milestones achieved under Macher’s leadership include:
- The 2013 move into a new world headquarters facility that includes a 29,000 square-foot R&D and Prototype Center staffed by Ph.D. chemists, chemical engineers, polymer engineers, materials scientists and technicians.
- The 2013 acquisition of a 130,000 square-foot manufacturing and R&D facility in Pouancé, France, where CSP currently conducts most of its research in carbon fiber and other advanced technologies.
- The acquisition of five plants from Magna’s composites operations in 2014, further expanding CSP’s footprint to 14 facilities.
- The introduction of the revolutionary Tough Class A (TCA) Ultra Lite® material in 2014.
- The 2014 formation of a 50:50 joint venture with Qingdao Victall Railway Group in Tangshan, China, to form CSP Victall.
“Serving as the CEO of CSP has been one of the most rewarding of all of the positions I’ve held, because we’ve been able to make such a significant impact in a relatively short period of time,” said Macher. “We took something that was very broken, and turned it into a world-class innovator for the automotive industry, and this is something I will always be very proud of. I will certainly miss the day-to-day interactions with my team, but I know I’m leaving CSP in very capable hands as I retire for the sixth time.”
Macher will continue on in a strategic advisory role for three months before stepping down for good in June 2017.
When Smith joined CSP in 2012, the company was pulling itself out of near insolvency and was saddled with high interest debt. It was lacking in financial discipline, including any standardized processes or procedures. Smith immediately went to work to implement standardized processes, including standardized reporting and KPI reporting company-wide, and a well-defined new business quoting model.
Smith worked side-by-side with Macher and Rooney in the transformation of CSP, and was the financial lead for all expansions, acquisitions and joint ventures over the past 5 years. In addition, he:
- Guided the company to top line growth of 18% CAGR, and EBITDA growth of 38%.
- Initiated two major refinancings of the company’s debt structure, yielding significant savings and providing greater flexibility for future growth.
- Implemented a number of procedural improvements, including a signature authority matrix with a focus on establishing accountability and improved visibility at all levels; a long-term strategic planning process; enhancements to data security, disaster recovery and systems redundancy to insure no interruption of product supply to customers.
- Upgraded in-house IT talent yielding tremendous growth in systems capability and data security.
“Joining the CSP executive team gave me the opportunity to apply my years of financial expertise to a system that presented a number of opportunities for improvement,” said Smith. “It’s been a great experience to watch the company embrace the proper disciplines and subsequently grow and prosper. As a bonus, we had quite a bit of fun along the way.”
Both Macher and Smith will continue in their board positions with the company’s Chinese joint venture, CSP Victall, until their terms expire.
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About Continental Structural Plastics
Continental Structural Plastics, a Teijin Group company, has provided leading-edge technologies in lightweight materials and composite solutions for the automotive, heavy truck, HVAC and construction industries for more than 40 years. Headquartered in Auburn Hills, Michigan, CSP provides full-service engineering support, and holds more than 50 patents covering materials development and manufacturing processes in composite materials formulation, design and manufacturing technologies. The company has operations on three continents and more than 3,200 employees. For more information, visit www.cspplastics.com.