Buying some Formica

Formica Corporation is being acquired by Auckland, New Zealand-based Fletcher Building for $700 million.


Formica Corporation is being acquired by Auckland, New Zealand-based Fletcher Building, a publicly traded material and construction company with annual revenues of $4 billion.


The company has five operating units: Laminates & Panels (principally involving Laminex, which currently owns the rights to and sells under the Formica brand in Australia and New Zealand), Building Products, Steel, Infrastructure and Distribution.


The acquisition of Formica will cost the company $700 million with additional deferred payments of up to $50 million from private equity investors Cerberus Capital Management and Oaktree Capital Management. Formica will retain the South America operations and certain real estate in California.


Formica, based in Cincinnati, Ohio, has more than 3,800 employees in 14 manufacturing and 33 distribution facilities spread across Asia, Europe and North America.


The transaction will be subject to regulatory approvals and is expected to close in early July. Formica does not expect the new ownership to have a significant impact on day-to-day operations.


In the near term, Formica will be structured as a business unit within the Fletcher Building Laminates & Panels division. Frank Riddick will remain as President and Chief Executive Officer of Formica and the management team will remain with the company.