OAK CREEK, Wis. - Grunau Co. President Paul Grunau announced that he has sold the company to APi Group Inc., a Minnesota-based company now comprised of 29 independently managed specialty contractors from across North America. The sale was effective March 31, 2006.

"While Grunau Co. is a financially robust company, I felt strongly that we eventually would need to align ourselves with a larger, more financially capable partner that can help us become an even stronger competitor in our local markets," said Grunau, who purchased the business from his family seven years ago.

With nearly $1 billion in annual sales, APi Group's business model is to maintain local management and company identity while sharing corporate and human resources, innovations, and economies of scale.

"Grunau Co.'s strong culture, industry knowledge, and local relationships are important reasons why APi Group wanted us to join their family of companies," Grunau said.

"As part of APi Group, our managers and employees can learn from 28 other best-in-class specialty contractors, helping us find new and better ways to add value in our relationships with our customers."

Headquartered in St. Paul, Minn., the APi Group companies provide services in five areas, including specialty construction, distribution, fabrication/manufacturing, fire protection, and low voltage systems. A privately-held company, APi Group employees own 33 percent of the company, with the balance held by company founder Lee Anderson.

"We are excited about Grunau Co. becoming part of our family of specialty contractors. Paul and his talented team have built a strong, vibrant company," said Russell Becker, president and CEO of APi Group.

"We recognize the value of our member companies maintaining their local identities, operational freedom, and local decision-making. We provide greater financial resources, while respecting the geographic and market differences inherent in the construction industry," said Becker.

Grunau remains as company president and key members of the management team also will stay on. "It is my intent to make this the best deal for everyone involved, including employees, customers, and APi Group," he said.

There are no plans to change any of Grunau Co.'s operations in Milwaukee, Orlando, Fla., Pittsburgh, Youngstown, Ohio, or Indianapolis as part of the sale to APi Group.

Terms of the sale were not disclosed.

Grunau Co. designs, installs, and services mechanical systems, including HVAC, plumbing, fire protection, and specialized electrical systems. Grunau Metals, a division of the company, offers specialty metal fabrication services. Grunau has offices in Wisconsin, Florida, Indiana, Ohio, and Pennsylvania. Established in 1920, the company employs 500 people and is headquartered in Oak Creek, Wis.

Publication date: 04/17/2006