SAINTE MARIE DE BEUCE, QUEBEC — Plastic bathware producer Maax Inc. plans to expand its U.S. production base by acquiring Bremen Glas Inc. of Bremen, Ind.Maax agreed in principle to pay US$5.6 million for Bremen and expects to com plete the deal this month, it announced Jan. 6. Bremen mainly makes glass fiber-reinforced polyester and ABS bathware products through its Housing Products Inc. division in Bremen and at its Cedar Glas Inc. division in Marion, Iowa .Maax estimated the operations will have sales of about C$26 million (US$19 million) in their 1997-98 fiscal year. They employ 225 and have total floor space of 180,000 square feet.Bremen, founded in 1980, is a private firm with ab out 20 shareholders, according to Joe Kronewitter, its vice president and chief financial officer. Kronewitter said in a telephone interview that Maax will introduce his operations to new markets and products. Maax does more high-e nd acrylic bathware business than Bremen does, he cited as an example. Bremen's sales have been strong because housing and construction activity has been healthy, noted Kronewitter.Bremen's two production plants will lower Maax's t ransportation costs to Midwestern U.S. markets, Marie-France Poulin, Maax's vice president of sales and marketing, said from her firm's Sainte Marie de Beauce headquarters. Maax's closest production point is its Pearl Baths subsidi ary in Minnesota, which will continue to focus on high-end acrylic products. Maax gradually will phase in production of a range of its own products at the Bremen plants.The Bremen deal will give Maax five U.S. manufacturing facilit ies. It operates five production plants in Canada.
MAAX PLANS PURCHASE OF BREMEN GLAS
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