Purchaser of Reno’s Desert Fire seeks larger presence in state
MDU Resources Group Inc., the company that bought Reno-based Desert Fire Holdings Inc., likes the fit of the northern Nevada company with a couple of acquisitions it made last year.
A spokesman for MDU Resources Group, which is based at Bismarck, N.D., said the company doesn’t plan any major changes in the operation of Desert Fire Holdings, which installs and maintains automatic fire sprinkler systems.
The acquisition announced last week comes on the heels of MDU’s purchase last year of Bombard Electric and Bombard Mechanical of Las Vegas.
Those companies commonly are working with Desert Fire on construction jobs in the Reno and Las Vegas areas, said Mark Hanson, a spokesman for MDU.
“This is a fit that provides a good package of services to a general contractor,” Hanson said, adding that the company increasingly hopes to provide one-stop shopping for general contractors searching for subcontractors.
Desert Fire, which was founded in 1980 with a staff of seven, today employs more than 200 people. Its annual sales top $35 million.
MDU didn’t disclose terms of the acquisition.
Hanson said MDU has sought a larger presence in fast-growing Nevada markets. With its acquisition of Desert Fire and the Bombard companies, it now employs about 1,500 in the state.
Desert Fire will be part of the construction services group of MDU. That group, which operates in the West, Midwest and South, earned $14.6 million in 2005.
Its parent company is involved in businesses ranging from electric generation to mining and construction. It earned $274 million last year.
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