TORONTO - Building products firm Jannock Ltd. established a U.S. vinyl fence production base when it acquired Heritage Vinyl Products' plant in Macon, Miss., on Jan. 12. The Toronto company paid US$17.2 million for the Heritage facility, a former division of farm equipment producer GSI Group Inc. of Assumption, Ill. The 125,000-square-foot operation has about 130 nonunionized employees making vinyl fence, deck and garden accessories, Jannock announced Jan. 15.
Jannock President Jay Atkinson predicted in a telephone interview that Heritage will have sales of about US$25 million to US$30 million in 1996. The Macon plant has 13 extrusion lines, added Brian Jamieson, Jannock's vice president of finance.
Atkinson said Heritage will boost Jannock's participation in the U.S. fence and deck market, which he estimated is growing at 20 percent annually. Jamieson said estimates for market size ranges from US$50 million to US$100 million per year. North American Pipe Corp. estimated the U.S. vinyl fence market at 100 million pounds when the Houston firm entered it in 1994.
Jannock has exported fence to the United States from its Mississauga, Ontario, extrusion plant. Mississauga makes a range of vinyl products and its annual sales of fence and deck products are as high as C$10 million (US$7.3 million). The plant began making such products three years ago.
GSI officials were unavailable to comment at press time. Atkinson said privately held GSI, also known as Grain Services Inc., also extrudes agricultural products in Assumption, but Heritage was its main plastics operation.
Heritage mainly sells to independent contractors and has product designs similar to Jannock's, Atkinson said. It has been renamed Heritage Vinyl Products Inc. and will be part of Jannock's Vinyl Group of Pittsburgh. Atkinson predicted Jannock's vinyl extrusion sales will reach about C$300 million (US$219 million) this year. Contributing to sales are vinyl window and siding plants in Pennsylvania and Kentucky it bought from Bird Corp. last year.
He estimates publicly held Jannock's 1995 sales at about C$1.2 billion (US$876 million), including metal fabricating and brick production.