Universal Forest Products Inc., a maker of pressure-treated lumber and roof trusses, said Wednesday (Nov. 15) it agreed to pay $47 million for certain assets of Banks Lumber, according to an Associated Press report.
Elkhart, Ind.-based Banks Lumber, which posted sales of about $147 million last year, is a unit of privately held Banks Corp., a maker of roof trusses and cut-to-size structural lumber for manufactured housing and recreational vehicle manufacturers.
The acquisition lets Universal Forest, headquartered in Grand Rapids, Mich., strengthen its position in the truss market and gives it wider access to the RV market, where the company sees long-term growth opportunities. Universal intends to dedicate one of its Indiana-area facilities to the RV market in early 2007 to grow that business.
The acquisition, expected to close Friday, includes certain real estate, equipment and inventory, as well as intangible assets. Universal will operate out of Banks facilities in Elkhart, Auburndale, Fla., Morristown, Tenn., and Hillsboro, Texas.
“Because the manufactured housing industry has been soft in the past several years and likely will remain that way in the short-term, it’s difficult for suppliers to achieve the best operating efficiencies,” said Michael B. Glenn, Universal president and chief executive. “This combination ensures that this industry will have a strong, efficient supplier to support manufacturers today, and to grow with them as the market rebounds in the coming years.”
Universal Forest Products, with about 10,000 employees in North America, posted 2005 sales of nearly $2.7 billion.