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Provo steel plant sold to Houston metals wholesaler

(Daily Herald) Chicago Bridge & Iron Co.'s fabricated steel-making plant in Provo has come under new ownership several months after it was shuttered when the Woodlands, Texas, company consolidated its steel fabricating operations nationwide.

Houston steel wholesaler Triple-S Steel Holdings Inc., through its affiliate Provo Works LLC, acquired a 160,000-square-foot plant at 700 S. 550 East in Provo, its equipment including forklifts, yard tractors, pickups, trailers and welders plus a 14-acre land parcel on which the plant sits in a multi-million dollar cash deal that closed last week, company officials announced Tuesday.

Terms of the deal weren't disclosed. Gary Stein, president of Triple-S Steel, said the asking price of the plant and land was $7.2 million.

"This is an opportunity for us to expand our presence through real estate ownership in Utah County," Stein said. "We bought it on the prospect that customers will want to come in and fabricate something without having to put together a fabricating plant. This is our first venture outside of Texas, where we've done this before."

"As landlord, we can be more creative in how we structure real estate leases. We can also be creative on how rent payments are structured over time because we're not buying the building with loans," he said.

Stein said the company is hiring a real estate broker to lease the building. Until the property is leased, the company is hiring an onsite plant manager to take care of the building.

The Provo plant closed, and its 12 workers were laid off in August, several months after Chicago Bridge resolved an eight-year legal battle with the Federal Trade Commission over antitrust issues. The company canceled a July auction of the Provo plant and its equipment after Triple-S Steel made a bid for the property.

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