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By Telegram Staff / Reprinted from The Columbus Telegram  – Date: February 10, 2020

Behlen buys out Trident Building Systems

Columbus’ own Behlen Mfg. Co. is continuing to grow, as the local company on Monday afternoon announced it has entered a merger agreement with Trident Building Systems, Inc., located in Sarasota, Florida.

Trident President Carl Petrat and the company’s leadership team will continue to manage the daily operations of the manufacturing facility and erection crews. Tom Boal, president of Behlen Building Systems, will lead the efforts to integrate Trident and Behlen.

Trident Building Systems is a family founded and owned company established in 1986. It has been providing their customers with top-quality pre-engineered and structural steel buildings from their 115,000-square-foot manufacturing space. Its reputation hinges on the founding principal mission statement: “We strive to be a full-service provider of metal buildings and structural steel fabrication that consistently meets and exceeds our customer’s needs and specifications.” Annual sales were in the $25 million range for 2019.

“We’ve had a long run with a great group of people and now we look forward to new opportunities,” Petrat said, in a provided statement. This merger with Trident will expand Behlen Building Systems business unit and open up new regional markets with additional production capabilities. A.F. “TR” Raimondo led a Management buyout of Behlen Mfg. Co. in 1984, returning it to local ownership in Columbus. At that time, Behlen was a company with $32 million in annual sales with significant losses, and its parent company The Wickes Corporation was in bankruptcy.

Today, Phil Raimondo, chairman and CEO, leads the Behlen Leadership Team. The most recent fiscal year ended on Oct. 26, 2019, with annual sales of $198 million. Trident will be the 13th acquisition for Behlen since its return to local ownership in 1984.

Behlen Mfg. Co., founded in 1936, has grown from the initial products developed in the garage of Columbus entrepreneur Walter D. Behlen to a global manufacturer exporting to more than 70 countries. The company now consists of three diverse business units, including The Building Group (Behlen & Trident), Behlen Country (the nation’s leading manufacturer of livestock equipment), International and Diversified Products (grain systems, strip joining presses, and custom fabrication). Behlen also owns BMC Transportation, with more than 90 owner/operators who deliver products throughout the U.S. and Canada. Additional U.S. locations include Baker City, Oregon; McGregor, Texas and Omaha.

“The Behlen Leadership Team and all Partners in Progress (employees) welcome the Trident team and look forward to combining efforts and growing both businesses. This is a combination of two family-owned companies with a great heritage and a bright future,” Behlen Mfg. Co. leaders said, in a statement. “The Trident and Behlen leadership teams look forward to continuing operations in Sarasota as we pursue growth opportunities together.”