Michael Araten is the President and CEO of Sterling Drive Ventures, LP, a family office that owns, among other things, The Rodon Group founded in 1956. Rodon is a highly automated plastics injection molder, with a focus on small parts, used in over 100 industries, including food, beverage,pharmaceutical diagnostic packaging, windows, consumer packaged goods, construction and toys www.rodongroup.com. Sterling Drive Ventures’ latest venture is SillDry - www.silldry.com, a company that sets the standard for window and door flashing in residential and commercial environments.
Prior to Sterling Drive Ventures, Michael was the President and CEO of K’NEX Brands,whose K’NEX™ construction toy is distributed in 40 countries. Over 95% of theK’NEX component parts are made at Rodon in Hatfield, PA
Mr. Araten joined K’NEX and the Rodon Group in May 2005 to serve as their Vice President and General Counsel. He became President & COO in January 2006 and President and CEO in January 2009.
Prior to joining K’NEX and Rodon, Mr. Araten served as Chief Litigation Counsel to Toll Brothers, Inc. as well as Senior Vice President and Corporate Counsel to O’Neill Properties Group. In those capacities, Mr. Araten was responsible for risk management, regulatory approvals, human resource issues and the management of over 100 law firms in 21 states. Mr. Araten also formed numerous joint ventures, led due diligence and acquisition teams, and obtained land development approvals that created over five billion ($5 billion) in new home sales and land value.
As President and CEO, Mr. Araten is responsible for all strategic and day to day operations of the company, and is a member of The Rodon Group Board of Directors. He speaks regularly on topics including advanced manufacturing, the toy industry, re-shoring, global competitiveness, entrepreneurship and innovation. Mr. Araten has appeared on CNBC, CNN, ABC World News, Bloomberg News, Fox Business, and numerous local and regional television and radio shows.
Mr. Araten serves on several corporate and non-profit Boards, including the DVIRCAdvisory Council, KaBOOM!, American Made Matters, ALMO Corporation, 911Safety, LLC, and the Delaware Valley Chapter of the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation of America. Mr. Araten is the Chairman of the Central Bucks County Chamber of Commerce and is a member of the Executive Committee of the Board for the Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce where he also serves as the Chair of the Middle Market Action Team.
Residing in Gwynedd Valley, Pennsylvania with his wife, Ellen and their two children, Mr. Araten holds a B.A. in Political Science from Stanford University, and a J.D. from the University of Pennsylvania.