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August 2009
The Grissim Report

Superior Homes Acquired by Larson Storm Doors, plans to double builder-dealer network

In a deal linked on July 23, Superior Homes of Watertown, SD agreed to be acquired by Larson Storm Doors of Brookings, SD. The terms of the agreement were undisclosed, but Superior Homes's President Allen Gordon, on the company's two principal owners, said the acquisition had been under consideration for the last seven months.

"We've bought products from Larson for quite some time and and we got to know each other's businesses. They saw us as a god prospect for their diversification program. We're very excited to see this happen, because as the recovery kicks in there are a lot of projects out there that have been on hold. Currently we have bids and proposals out totaling a potential $63 million, and we know more is coming." The projects include home subdivisions, commercial properties, and multifamily units for Native American tribes.

Larson Storm Doors (larsondorrs.com), a family-owned business, is the #1 selling storm door company in America, with annual sales in excess of $500 million and major national clients including Lowe's and Home Depot. Superior Homes (founded in the late 1940s) was long known for its well-regarded Medallion brand of HUD homes sold in nine states in the upper Midwest and mountain West regions.

In 2003 a local group of investors purchased the company and began moving into modular production, eventually dropping the HUD-code homes entirely to take advantage of modular's easier financing. Today Superior's business is 25% commercial and 75% single-family homes. It sells directly to developers on a project basis as well as to a network of of 22 retailer-builders. "We hope to double that in the coming months," Gordon said. "We've got guys out on the road right now working on that." As for Superior's near tern prospects gordon is cautiously upbeat: "We think the rest of this year will be sluggish, but 2010 looks much better."


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