BERWICK, Maine and CUDAHY, Wis., Nov. 9 /PRNewswire/ -- Prime Tanning Company today announced the signing of a definitive agreement to merge with Cudahy Tanning Company. The operations of the combined companies will create the largest premium leather producer in North America, with revenues in excess of $250 million. Prime Tanning previously had announced in August a definitive agreement to merge with Irving Tanning Company; Cudahy Tanning will add tremendous strength to that alliance. The combined businesses will be called Prime Tanning Company and will be led by President and CEO Bob Moore, and Co-Chairmen Mike and Steve Kaplan. As a result of this merger, all Cudahy side-leather finishing will be transitioned into Prime's Hartland facility, (formerly Irving Tanning), and the Cudahy facility will be closed. William R. "BJ" Law, current CEO of Cudahy, and other key personnel including its Technical Director will continue with Prime to ensure a smooth and comprehensive transfer of all customer leather production into the Hartland facility. The Cudahy tannery will remain in operation until the transition is complete. The addition of Cudahy's customers will broaden Prime's account base to include other leading footwear, accessory, and specialty leather brands. Prime Tanning's current customers include premier brands such as Born, H. H. Brown, Coach, Cole Haan, Justin, Rocky Boot, SAS, Sofft, Timberland, Wolverine and the U.S. Military. Prime's CEO Bob Moore commented: "This merger with Cudahy brings tremendous technical, R&D, and customer synergies to Prime that are unmatched in our industry. We welcome the Cudahy team and we look forward to the significant benefits these mergers will offer to all of our collective stakeholders." Cudahy's CEO BJ Law commented: "This is both an exciting opportunity and a difficult personal decision for me. My family has been producing leather in Cudahy, WI for over 60 years. The closing of this facility will end a very important chapter in our family's history. However, the opportunities that lie before us with this merger are countless. Cudahy Tanning will add significant competencies, marketing opportunities, and technical resources to Prime. The Irving and Prime facilities are truly world class operations, and by working together, will eliminate many of the challenges we currently face in the domestic tanning industry." About Prime Tanning Prime Tanning Co., Inc. operates the largest vertically integrated wet blue and side-leather finishing tanneries in the United States, with annual capacities of 125 million feet and 30 million feet, respectively. Headquartered in Berwick, Maine, Prime employs 450 people at its St. Joseph, Missouri and Berwick, Maine facilities. Mike and Steve Kaplan are grandsons of Morris Kaplan, who founded the business in 1914, and the sons of Leonard D. Kaplan, who was Chairman of the Board for nearly 40 years. Prime's Web site is http://www.primetanning.com. About Cudahy Tanning Cudahy Tanning Company specializes in unique and high tech leathers for the show, saddle, accessory and sporting goods markets. Cudahy Tanning currently operates an 8.5 million foot finished side-leather operation, and employs approximately 100 people at its Cudahy, Wisconsin facility. William R. "BJ" Law currently serves as CEO. He is the son of William L. Law and grandson of William Bancroft Law who founded the company in 1945. Cudahy's Web site is http://www.cudahytanning.com About Irving Tanning Company Irving Tanning Company is one of the largest side-leather tanneries in the United States, with capacity to finish over 30 million feet of leather per year. Established in 1925, Irving operates a modern tanning facility at its headquarters in Hartland, Maine that employs approximately 115 people, and finishes leather in India through a joint venture with Bhartiya International, LTD. Irving's Web site is http://www.irvingtanning.com.
SOURCE Prime Tanning Company