BAMKO Expands Capabilities With Acquisition Of Sutter’s Mill Specialties

Los Angeles, California-based distributor BAMKO (PPAI 242148, D11), a division of the Superior Group of Companies, has acquired Tempe, Arizona, distributor Sutter’s Mill Specialties, Inc. (PPAI 103083, D3). First reported in a PPB Newslink Breaking News alert on Monday, the transaction closed December 1. BAMKO reports that Sutter’s Mill has generated approximately $24.5 million in non-PPE revenue over the past 12 months. Financial terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.

“The acquisition of Sutter’s Mill is a major win for BAMKO. It immediately helps us extend the significant capabilities and advantages we have over our industry competitors,” says Jake Himelstein, BAMKO’s president. “BAMKO is on a mission to continuously raise the ceiling of what it means to be the best company in our industry. Sutter’s Mill’s extensive in-house decoration, production and engraving capabilities are second to none in this industry. We will immediately begin offering unique and custom capabilities to our entire customer base, making us a more capable and valuable partner in ways we can support their businesses.”

Himelstein adds, “The first thing we look for in our acquisition targets is a cultural fit, and Michael Butler, the president of Sutter’s Mill Specialties, and his team have built something special that will fit so well with BAMKO’s unique culture of growth, positivity and competitive spirit.”

Speaking to PPB Newslink, Himelstein says, “They have a ton of in-house production and decoration capabilities that we’ll immediately integrate into our business: laser engraving, full-color-wrap digital printing, pad printing, embroidery, custom foam packaging. They have also made substantial capital investments into robotics and automation that we think will be foundational to what we do in the years ahead. Those investments and their institutional expertise in robotics allow us to dramatically accelerate our broader technology initiatives. They also have a large warehouse and distribution center that we intend to leverage and eventually expand as a distribution hub in the Southwest.”

Sutter’s Mill Specialties was established in 1986 and was ranked as the largest promotional distributor in Arizona by the Phoenix Business Journal. Butler says, “Becoming a part of BAMKO will cement the legacy we’ve built here at Sutter’s Mill. We’ve been approached by a lot of folks over the years interested in acquiring our business, but none come close to possessing the culture, capabilities or energy that the BAMKO team is able to infuse into our business. We see where the direction of our industry is headed and BAMKO has proven that it is at the forefront of that change, which is very clearly transforming the future of branded merchandise. While the business side and growth opportunities are so exciting, what excites me most is the opportunity to join forces with such a talented, hard-working and high-character leadership team. The future is extremely bright here at Sutter’s Mill, and I cannot wait to see how we shape that future together.”

Himelstein notes that Sutter’s Mill's name and branding will continue. He says, “It will go to market as Sutter’s Mill powered by BAMKO. From a go-to-market strategy perspective, the idea will be to frame it as the same Sutter’s Mill that their customers and employees love, but with a whole heck of a lot more tools, capabilities and resources that we intend to infuse into their business. Basically, an upgrade to Sutter’s Mill 2.0, so to speak, for their customers.”

The deal is the latest acquisition for BAMKO. In February, it acquired the assets of Seattle-based distributor Gifts By Design, Inc. The company now operates as the Awards, Recognition and Incentives Division of BAMKO. In late 2019, BAMKO expanded its footprint into Texas with the formation of a strategic partnership with Dallas-based distributor Lapgevity. BAMKO’s parent company, Superior Group of Companies, also operates in the promotional market through subsidiaries Tangerine Promotions, Ltd. and Public Identify, Inc.

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