In Michigan, pro dealers merge

Zeeland, Mich.-based Zeeland Lumber will merge with Hamilton Farm Bureau's Hamilton Truss and Hamilton Lumber divisions to form Zeeland Lumber Holdings.

The entity will consist of three divisions: Zeeland Lumber and Supply, Hamilton Truss and Zeeland Contractor Services.

"As a complete source for the building industry, Zeeland Lumber and Supply Co. will continue to create new business strategies and future enhancements to keep us a front runner in the industry," the company said in a prepared statement.

With the merger, Zeeland will operate the Hamilton Truss plant as well as a Zeeland showroom -- or concept store -- in Hamilton, the location of Hamilton Lumber. Zeeland already operates a lumberyard in Zeeland along with concept stores in Kalamazoo and the Grand Rapids area.

All shipping will be routed through the Zeeland location.

According to a report in the Grand Rapids (Mich.) Press, Zeeland Lumber will take on 75 percent ownership, and Hamilton Farm Bureau will take the remaining 25 percent. Of the seven-member board -- five will be from Zeeland and two from Hamilton.

"In a downturn it is important to develop new business strategies, and this is one of ours," said Mark Vanden Bosch, an executive with Zeeland Lumber.

Zeeland Lumber was recognized in 2006 by Home Channel News as the Independent ProDealer of the Year.