Wednesday, May 25, 2011


As I predicted last year, hunting season is open for private investment companies to buy modular factories.  It just happened again.  Let’s hope they will be run as effectively as H.I.G. is running their growing modular empire of Excel Homes, Mod-U-Kraf and All American Homes.

A firm called WesternOne Equity Income Fund has bought Langley, BC’s BritcoStructures for $93 million.
Olympic Village
Britco, a British Columbia, Canada, manufacturer, famous for building Olympic housing for Whistler village, is one of the largest builders of modular and manufactured housing in Canada.

Original owners and founders Rick McClymont and David Taft are both in their 60s, and were looking to hand off the company to people who will carry it forward with their original vision intact, said Gardner.  Gardner is staying on, and Mike Ridley, a 14-year veteran at the company, will take on the top post.

Carlos Yam, chief financial officer for the income fund, said WesternOne already owns half a dozen companies involved in construction, movie production, shipyard work and aerial rentals.  They are adding Britco to their stable because it will be a good fit with those existing firms, Yam said.

The purchase does not mean any immediate changes for Britco employees or existing customers.  “No layoffs,” Yam said. “If anything, there will be opportunities to expand.”

The current management team will continue to run the business. There are about 320 employees at Britco, in Langley, Agassiz, and Penticton.  One of the biggest changes will be that the company will now be part of a publicly traded company, rather than being privately held. That will change how its financial performance is reported.


Anonymous said...

Coach, do you think that after all the modular home plants are gobbled up by the big power investors that they will start to organize a marketing plan that the privately owned plants today can't seem to get off the ground?

William said...

In spite of Coach's enthusiasm -- let's not get ahead of ourselves. The jury is still out on how well HIG will do in owning Excel, Mod-U-Kraf and All American. These companies along with their competitors have a tough road ahead keeping sales at breakeven or better while the residential market improves.
As for Britco, they are an outstanding company and the new owners should be proud to own that organization.
Best wishes to all.