May River Capital, a Chicago-based private equity firm focused on lower middle-market industrial growth companies, announced today that it has appointed Brad Sterner as Chief Executive Officer of Advanced Material Processing (AMP), its platform focused on material processing equipment for such sectors as food and beverage, pharmaceutical, nutraceutical and chemical. Sterner was previously Executive Chairman of AMP, which  consists of Kason Corporation and Marion Process Solutions.

“During the pandemic, AMP has aggressively responded to industry needs and as a result, has  experienced significant growth serving its food, pharmaceutical, nutraceutical and industrial customers,” said Steve Griesemer, Partner, May River Capital.  “We are proud of the hard work and dedication of the AMP team and we look forward to continued growth of the platform, both organically and through acquisitions. Brad Sterner has been a terrific partner to May River for many years and he has deep experience in the highly fragmented material processing equipment sector. Combining Brad’s experience with the existing talented team will drive organic growth, and his experience integrating new operations positions us well for further complementary acquisitions,” Griesemer added.

Sterner most recently served as CEO of May River’s Hunt Valve platform and he will continue to serve as Executive Chairman of Hunt Valve’s Board of Directors, while he takes the helm of the AMP platform as CEO. 

“It has been incredible to witness the talented AMP team in action, strengthening our industry leadership during this pandemic,” commented Sterner. “AMP is uniquely positioned to benefit from the short- and long-term underlying trends in the hygienic processing end-markets, particularly food.  To accelerate this favorable position, Henry Alamzad, formerly the Kason President and a 30-year veteran in the process equipment industry, is appointed to the newly created role of Senior VP Global Sales and Business Development to expand AMP’s newly formed Thermal Process Solutions Group.  Lee Eilers continues his leadership role as President of Marion Process Solutions,” he added.

AMP Executes New Sale-Leaseback Transaction
In addition to appointing Sterner CEO, AMP recently executed a sale-leaseback transaction at its Marion facility near Cedar Rapids, Iowa. The transaction unlocks significant value for AMP to redeploy toward its growth initiatives.

“As a general practice, we do not seek to own real estate as part of our portfolio investments, since real estate often fails to provide the higher levels of return that we seek in our investments, more generally. The heightened demand in the market for sale-leaseback transactions presents a unique opportunity to improve AMP’s capitalization, at relatively low rental rates, and enables us to redeploy the capital into higher value investments within this platform. I think you’ll see us doing more of these types of transactions, given the attractive market conditions,” commented Chip Grace, Partner, May River Capital.

For more information, visit