RV supplier Lippert Components Inc., a subsidiary of Drew Industries Inc., has entered into a $6.2 million agreement to buy about 37 acres and several office buildings and manufacturing plants in Goshen, Ind.
Drew spokesmen did not identify the property’s owner nor the location of the real estate, but said it is “a primary owner of a significant customer of the company.”
The purchase expands Drew’s presence in RV-saturated Elkhart County while also consolidating a portion of existing operations for Lippert, which manufactures travel-trailer-fifth-wheel frames and an array of specialty slideout systems for motorized and towable RVs.
Drew and its subsidiaries, which include window supplier Kinro Inc., also supply product to the manufactured housing industry.
“Currently, we have around 17 facilities in Elkhart County,” said Fredric M. Zinn, chief financial officer and executive vice president for White Plains, N.Y.-based Drew. “This represents a big move for us and is an indication that the RV industry is doing well.”
Zinn said the purchase will allow the company to make better use of existing facilities “and give us some room for expansion.”
The move follows an announcement in May by Lippert detailing a 50,000-square-foot expansion to a manufacturing plant in Middlebury, Ind.
Both Drew and Lippert have also initiated a succession of strategic acquisitions over the past two years that include: towable frame supplier Zieman Manufacturing Co., Whittier, Calif.; Smith Center, Kan.-based LTM Manufacturing, a supplier of specialty slideout trays for batteries, LP tanks and storage as well as electric stabilizer jacks, flexguard slideout wire protection systems and slideout patio decks; ET&T Frames, Elkhart, Ind., a supplier of chassis for specialty trailers, park models, office units, cargo trailers and towable RVs. Also, in 2001, Kinro acquired Better Bath, formerly a division of bankrupt Kevco Inc.
According to a report in the The Journal News in White Plains, terms of the Goshen property purchase require payment of $500,000 upon signing the agreement, $2.6 million when the current tenant vacates the property, and $3.1 million when Drew Industries acquires title to the property in 2006.