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Saint-Gobain acquires Canadian siding manufacturer in nearly billion-dollar purchase

Russell Hixson
Saint-Gobain acquires Canadian siding manufacturer in nearly billion-dollar purchase
SAINT-GOBAIN — A presentation to investors shows the exterior building products solutions offered by North American companies that Saint-Gobain owns or is in the process of acquiring.

Saint-Gobain announced it will acquire Kaycan Ltd., a family-owned manufacturer and distributor of exterior building materials in Canada and the U.S. for US$928 million.

Officials for the global manufacturing company explained the move is part of a larger strategy to offer broader system solutions for the growing North American residential and light commercial market.

Kaycan operates 12 manufacturing plants – nine of them Canada — and employs around 1,300 people. Saint-Gobain noted Kaycan’s success is in part due to its dedicated distribution and strong channel coverage in big box retail, and its customer reach across the country. Kaycan also utilizes recycling services of post-consumption materials which can in turn be incorporated into the production process.

“For Saint-Gobain it ticks a lot of boxes,” explained Mark Rayfield, CEO of Saint-Gobain North America, noting their team spent a lot of time meeting with Kaycan officials and visiting its facilities to ensure the cultures would align.

Kaycan was founded in 1974 and has been family-owned and operated for over 40 years. Rayfield said the company has great leadership and the family intends to stay on board.

He believes the addition of Kaycan and other acquisitions, like construction chemicals manufacturer GCP Applied Technologies, will help Saint-Gobain present building solutions to customers in Canada and the U.S. In the long run, the combination will give builders more options, he said.

“We want to be leaders in light and sustainable construction,” said Rayfield. “And we want to be solutions based, not just products based. If you bring a whole portfolio together – water membranes, air membranes, shingles, siding options, esthetics – you have a system to sell to the contractor.”

Saint-Gobain also owns CertainTeed, a leading North American brand of exterior and interior building products, including roofing, siding, solar, fence, railing, trim, insulation, drywall and ceilings.

The Kaycan acquisition is also a piece of Saint-Gobain’s global Grow and Impact strategy, which includes plans to reduce the company’s energy consumption and emissions.

The French multinational company, which has 167,000 employees in 75 countries, is aiming to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050.

Rayfield explained the acquisition positions Saint-Gobain to not only work towards these goals, but to take advantage of the growing demand for sustainably created aluminum and engineered wood siding solutions.

“It’s a way to grow in a high-growth market while minimizing impacts,” said Rayfield. “By using recycled materials and creating a circular economy, Kaycan brings a lot to that.”

Rayfield added Saint-Gobain believes Canada and the U.S. have a large unmet demand for housing and light commercial. In the coming years sustainable solutions will be more and more the norm.

“We love the construction sector in Canada,” said Rayfield. “It is an extremely important region for us, and we have fantastic relationships there. I think the sector will be excited to see this addition to the portfolio and we are really excited to partner with Kaycan. We have huge respect for that brand and the business. These are exciting times.”

Lionel Dubrofsky, president of Kaycan, called the acquisition an exciting new chapter for the company. “Ever since my family founded Kaycan in 1974, our team has been laser-focused on providing the best customer service possible throughout Canada and the United States, all while pushing the boundaries of imagination and innovation to expand our product portfolio over the past decades,” he said in a press release. “Now we have the opportunity to join Saint-Gobain, a renowned leader in light and sustainable construction. We are filled with gratitude for our team’s hard work over the past 48 years, and we’re thrilled to see what comes next for our combined companies.”

The official closing of the transaction is subject to antitrust approvals and satisfaction of other customary closing conditions.

The acquisition is expected to close by the end of 2022.

 

Follow the author on Twitter @RussellReports.

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