2016 was a record year for Keystone Capital. We acquired more businesses, deployed more capital and traveled more miles supporting our portfolio than at any time in our history. We are extremely proud of what we have accomplished and even more optimistic about our continued success in 2017. We could not have achieved these results without the great work of our staff, and with that we are excited to announce the following well-deserved promotions at Keystone: Chaoran Jin and Jason Van Zant have been promoted to Managing Director, and Dennis Howe and Bill Sommerschield have been promoted to Principal.
Chaoran Jin Promoted to Managing Director
Chaoran joined Keystone in 2009. Chaoran has been the lead professional supporting the operational and acquisition needs of our consumer products business, Costume Gallery, and most recently, our Asian foods platform, Nature Soy. She has also played an active role with Peak Technologies and Movilitas Consulting, and is the lead professional managing our activities and office in China. “Chaoran brings Keystone deep foundational insight into business strategy development. She has also created tangible value to our broader portfolio by driving our Asian sourcing and sales initiative,” commented David Greer, Managing Director at Keystone. Prior to Keystone, Chaoran worked for Owens Corning, McKinsey & Company, Citigroup and Motorola.
Jason Van Zant Promoted to Managing Director
Jason joined Keystone in 2008, and over his time at Keystone has closed 15 transactions for the firm. Jason is the primary lead professional on E4H, our health care architectural firm, and The Scott Group, our luxury goods business. “Jason has been a huge asset to our acquisition efforts over the years. He has significantly enhanced our marketing and new business development approach, and more recently brought the same energy to the overall support of some of our businesses”, commented Scott Gwilliam, Managing Director and Co-Founder of Keystone. Prior to Keystone, Jason worked for Lincoln International.
Dennis Howe Promoted to Principal
Dennis joined Keystone in 2013 and has had a significant impact on many of our portfolio companies, including Capsa Solutions, Avalon, Atlas Die and Rocore. From his days at Danaher as an executive, Dennis has a deep background in acquisition integration, operational efficiency and process change management. In addition to his time at Danaher, Dennis’ previous experience includes working for The Boston Consulting Group on strategy assignments for industrial, financial and consumer goods clients and at BASF Corporation working as an Operations Manager and as a Product Development engineer.
Bill Sommerschield Promoted to Principal
Bill joined Keystone in 2014 and has played a key role with several of our more recent platform companies. He is the lead professional on The Greeley Company and Cherry Hill Photo, and also led the negotiations on the acquisitions of Nature Soy and Rubbermaid Healthcare. Prior to joining Keystone, Bill was a VP at Lake Capital, where he focused on the firm’s investment activities and served on the Board of Directors of Engine Group, ORC International, HMI, and Addison Group.
The last five years has been a particularly exciting time at Keystone Capital. We have significantly increased our level of acquisition activity with both new platforms and add-ons to our existing portfolio, and this increased activity has driven the need for even greater portfolio involvement. We could not have accomplished this without the tremendous dedication and effort of Chaoran, Jason, Dennis and Bill.
“These team members are being recognized for their past contributions to the firm as well as their future potential,” commented Kent Dauten, Managing Director and Co-Founder of Keystone. “We thank them for their dedication and hard work and look forward to what they will accomplish in the coming years.”
Jason Van Zant