Armtec Buys Highway Noise Barrier Maker For $18.5M

Sewers, drains and bridge components maker acquired Durisol Inc. and related highway infrastructure products in a deal that could be worth $33.5 million.

GUELPH, Ontario (CP) -- Armtec Infrastructure Income Fund says it has acquired Durisol Inc. and its related companies, makers of acoustic highway barriers, in a deal that could be worth $33.5 million in cash and fund units.

The southwestern Ontario company, which makes sewers, drains and bridge components, said late Thursday it will pay $5 million in units and $13.5 million in cash for Durisol. Another $15 million may be made in 2010 if the acquired company meets certain financial targets.

Hamilton-based Durisol manufactures highway noise barriers and related highway and infrastructure products such as retaining walls and acoustic enclosures. The company's sales are primarily in Ontario and the northeastern and midwestern United States.

Durisol has been designing, producing and installing its products for more than 50 years and employs 100 permanent workers and between 40 to 60 seasonal employees.

"The acquisition of Durisol creates strong growth opportunities for the fund and diversifies our product line in the growing infrastructure sector," said Charles Phillips, president and CEO of Armtec. "The transaction is immediately accretive to the fund's earnings and complements our other divisions.

"The investment in this business broadens our product, market and geographic presence, and benefits new and existing customers."

Armtec said it plans to expand Durisol's sales into Western Canada, Quebec and the U.S. Pacific Northwestern states.

The Guelph, Ont. fund is a leading manufacturer and seller of drainage pipe and engineered concrete girders used in bridges.

The acquisition was announced after the close of stock trading Thursday. Earlier, Armtec shares rose 23 cents to close at $24.

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