PHOENIX—Rubber recycler LandStar Inc., which purchased two crumb rubber firms in early 2001, has shored up its crumb business again with the acquisition of two more materials companies.
LandStar announced Jan. 30 it purchased the outstanding shares of Phoenix-based Modified Asphalt Technologies Inc. Six days later, the company reported an agreement to buy all outstanding shares of Rouse Polymerics International Inc. and associate firms Rouse Holdings Inc. and R|&|D Technology Inc., all of Vicksburg, Miss.
The MAT purchase will allow LandStar to branch into the development and manufacture of asphalt rubber binder materials, used for applications such as roofing and asphalt paving, the company said. The operation will be renamed LandStar Polymer Asphalt Inc. but will remain in Phoenix.
Jeff Smith, the MAT executive from whom LandStar bought the shares, will join the firm to focus on the Polymer Asphalt segment's development. He will serve as divisional vice president for asphalt sales and marketing.
The Rouse transaction, still to be finalized, gives LandStar access to the firm's Vicksburg facilities and, more importantly, its experience in research and development, LandStar said. Rouse has been an industry materials leader for years, specializing in elastomeric and plastic powders, asphalt roofing and pavement modifiers and specialty blends.
Michael Rouse, CEO of Rouse Polymerics, will stay on at LandStar as vice president of research and development.
"We're bringing in some of the leading individuals in the country," said Dan McVicker, LandStar executive vice president. "Teaming up with them and these companies is an outstanding step for LandStar."
The purchases will increase LandStar's employment substantially, adding about 250 people combined, Mr. McVicker said. Financial details of the transactions were not disclosed.
LandStar's quest to "globally dominate the polymer redeployment and polymer reactivation industries" started in January with the purchase of Phoenix-based PolyTek Rubber & Recycling Inc., the world's largest crumb rubber producer.
That acquisition gave LandStar control of four manufacturing facilities with an annual capacity of more than 150 million pounds of crumb, the company said. The firm plans to retrofit the PolyTek manufacturing operations for its proprietary Activated Modified Rubber devulcanization process.
The firm also has completed the acquisition of Rubber Recovery Ltd., the second crumb rubber company it bought in early January.
LandStar, which has been based nominally in Victoria, British Columbia, was to have moved to new headquarters in Nashville, Tenn., by the end of February. But with the recent acquisitions and the focus on integrating PolyTek and Rubber Recovery, corporate operations have been located in Phoenix in the interim, Mr. McVicker said.
The relocation to Nashville is still in the works, but the company isn't sure when it will take place, he said.