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Forum staff reports, Published October 06 2010

Trail King Industries has new owner

Carlisle Companies Inc. has sold Trail King Industries Inc., its specialty trailer business headquartered in Mitchell, S.D., with plants in Mitchell and West Fargo.

CC Industries, which is part of Henry Crown & Co., bought Trail King.

Carol Lowe, Trail King Industries president, said it will be “business as usual” at both plants.

“Both operations, the one in Mitchell as well as the one in West Fargo, will continue as they’re currently operating,” she said.

Trail King will operate as a stand-alone entity owned by CC Industries.

Employees were told Tuesday about the sale. Dave Roberts, Carlisle Companies chairman, president and CEO, met with members of management at both locations.

Bill Crown, president and CEO of CC Industries, is making presentations to all employees at both locations today.

Lowe said she hopes the sale will lead to continued job creation.

Trail King has added employees at both locations throughout 2010.

In March 2009, Trail King was down to 122 employees at its West Fargo plant after announcing 36 layoffs. There are now 225 employees in West Fargo, Lowe said.

“CCI is a privately held company. They’re very committed to the trailer industry,” Lowe said. “They like the market and will continue to invest.”

Roberts said that while Trail King’s sales were increasing, the product wasn’t aligned with Carlisle’s core business.

Crown called Trail King an “exceptional company with a long history of excellence.”

“We are delighted to add Trail King to the Crown family’s portfolio of transportation equipment companies,” he said.

The Daily Republic in Mitchell, S.D., owned by Forum Communications Co., contributed to this report.