Former Fleetwood plant sells for $3.85M
PAXINOS - The remaining portion of the former Fleetwood RV complex has been purchased by the parent company of Great Dane Trailers, a well-known manufacturer that has made a number of acquisitions nationwide since celebrating its 100th anniversary in 2000.
CC Industries (CCI) Inc. bought the 73-acre property along Route 487 for $3.85 million, according to a deed filed Tuesday with the Northumberland County Register and Recorder's Office. It was one of four properties acquired by CCI in a sale authorized Aug. 1 by the U.S. Bankruptcy Court's Central California District.
CCI is the parent company of Great Dane, which also operates a plant in Danville. It is the private-equity division of Chicago-based Henry Crown and Co., which is among the nation's richest private companies.
A spokesman for Great Dane remained mum Thursday on CCI's intentions in Paxinos.
"At this time no specific plans for the property have been announced," David P. Grant, marketing director, said in confirming the purchase.
Even so, the purchase suggests the company might at some point be using the facility to make Great Dane products, which included refrigerated trailers, dry-freight trailers, platform trailers and truck bodies. When and if that will happen and how many people might be employed remain unanswered.
Vinny Clausi, Northumberland County commissioner, who said he's been involved in the negotiations for several months, said he couldn't say much on the matter.
Clausi did say he'd introduce a resolution Tuesday during a county commissioners meeting to obtain right-of-way access to a road off Route 487 owned by Polar Tech Industries.
Polar Tech purchased another part of the Fleetwood complex in September 2011. The Illinois-based company paid $999,000 for 49.786 acres and a 211,229-square-foot building. The Chicago-based firm, founded in 1984, fabricates temperature-sensitive insulated packaging and shipping products and refrigerants for the food and science industry, and is currently employing about 55 people.
The Polar Tech property is closer to Route 487 in the Reed Industrial Park, while the property purchased by CCI includes the building constructed in 2003 and visible on a hillside further away from the highway along Industrial Park Road. Fleetwood expanded its painting operation when it constructed the new building.
The property was purchased free and clear of all liens. As part of the bankruptcy sale, CCI also acquired three other former Fleetwood properties, including a former travel trailer plant on 30 acres in Edgerton, Ohio, a former travel trailer plant on 14.4 acres in Crawfordsville, Ind., and 63.19 acres of land in Wichita Falls, Texas.
Fleetwood Enterprises filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in March 2009. When it shuttered local operations in October 2008, 325 jobs were lost.
Great Dane reportedly employs about 345 people at its Danville plant, which is the former Strick's Eastern Van manufacturing business. Strick's was one of four "major" acquisitions made by Great Dane in the two years after the company celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2000, according to its website.
Acquisitions noted on the site also include those in 2004 in Huntsville, Tenn., and in 2010 in Statesboro, Ga.
Last week at the 2013 Great American Trucking Show in Dallas, Texas, the company showcased its series of Freedom flatbed trailers and other products, according to a company press release.