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Hoosier State contractor snatched up by Skanska

A purchase of Indiana native Industrial Contractors is a boon for Skanska, opening up a hitherto absent regional visibility and adding a market specialty. The $135 million acquisition took place in December.

A deal for a family owned contractor from Indiana has given Skanska a foothold in the Midwest as well as a profile in a previously untapped market: power and energy.

Skanska, the multinational construction and development outfit based in Sweden, paid $135 million (SEK 870 million; €98 million) for Industrial Contractors, a Heartland-centric construction business located in Evansville, Ind.

The newly acquired Skanska operation recorded a reported $500 million in revenue for 2001, and has a staff of 2,400, according a company Website.

Skanska in a press statement claimed Industrial Contractors represented a strategic expansion via its specialization in power and energy and “solid reputation in the Midwest”.

“What we brought to the table was power and energy,” agreed Jeff Seymore, head of marketing for Industrial Contractors. “Skanska is a specialist in project development, like bridge construction”.

Seymore said Industrial Contractors had not been pursuing a merger or sale of the company, and had been approached by Skanska.

He added that operating under the Skanska brand name will let Industrial Contractor pursue more business and widen its market reach.

Founded in 1964 by Charles Braun, Industrial Contractors has a respectable profile in the energy sector; the company built a coal gasification facility for Duke Energy, the Nobel Prize winning energy concern and perennial Wall Street favorite.

Alan Braun, son of founder Charles Braun, is chairman and chief executive officer of Industrial Contractors, and will function as an “active adviser,” Skanska said. Company management, meanwhile, will remain unchanged, with Danny Quinn running Industrial Contractors day-to-day as president.

Skanska said the company will compose “a third” of its US arm, a 74,000 person operation headquartered in New York and responsible for generating $5 billion in 2010. Its most recent piece of business North America came from Virginia, where Skanska teamed with Macquarie Group for a public-private partnership (PPP) on the $2.1 million Midtown Tunnel project.

The Midtown Tunnel PPP is expected to reach financial close in February, and will have a 58-year concession.

Seymore said Skanska has not lined up a specific project for Industrial Contractors, which will now be named Industrial Contractors USA.