The acquisition provides James Hardie Gypsum with one of North America’s largest and most strategic reserves of low-cost, high-quality gypsum rock. The deal also secures a lower cost and higher quality source of gypsum rock for the company’s Las Vegas wallboard plant, permits the eventual sale of the company’s existing Las Vegas mine site, and enables James Hardie Gypsum to significantly expand its participation in the U.S. markets for high-value plaster products, agricultural gypsum and gypsum filler.
Rugg said: “This purchase will enable us to expand our product range and market position; enter new, high-value market segments; reduce costs; and increase our return on assets.”
The Western Gypsum mine and mining rights areas cover 40,000 acres near the borders of Utah, Arizona and Nevada. The business has gypsum reserves and mining rights for more than 3.5 billion tons of gypsum.
“Western’s low cost gypsum rock will significantly expand the life of the gypsum reserves available to our Las Vegas plant, and further strengthen our low cost, competitive position in the southwest market,” said Robert F. Rugg, president of James Hardie Gypsum.
Headquartered in Mission Viejo, Calif., James Hardie Gypsum is the fourth largest manufacturer of gypsum wallboard in the United States. The company operates manufacturing plants in Nashville, Ark., Seattle and Las Vegas.