CRL Employees Get Valuable “Thank You” Upon Acquisition

Donald Friese

Donald Friese

C.R. Laurence’s Donald Friese became a whole lot richer last week when he finalized the $1.3-billion sale of his company to Oldcastle BuildingEnvelope®, and he’s already starting to give it away. Recognizing the company couldn’t have gotten where it is without its employees, he made sure they were rewarded, too.

A notable condition regarding the acquisition was that CRL would continue to be independently managed and operated as a subsidiary of OBE, retaining all existing management structures and personnel.

Friese, however, took it a step further and not only committed to keeping current personnel on board, but also ensured the employees knew they were appreciated.

Upon the company’s sale to OBE, Friese sent a thank-you note to each CRL employee who has been with the company at least a year, and attached to the note was a bonus. It was no small gesture, as the bonus payouts total approximately $80 million.

“I am extremely proud of what we have built together over the past 55 years at C.R. Laurence Company. I look at C.R. Laurence as an extended family that has helped me over the years by their unwavering dedication, strong work ethic, and resolute commitment to providing exceptional customer service,” Friese wrote to his employees. “I am so pleased to share this bonus with you as recognition of your individual efforts as a valued member of our team, and to say ‘thank you very much’ for making C.R. Laurence a great success.”™, sister website to™, broke the news of the major acquisition Thursday, August 30, and the sale was completed last Thursday with the $1.3 billion payment, which was pending final approval from the U.S. Federal Trade Commission, Justice Department and other agencies. It is believed to have been the largest acquisition deal ever between two U.S. glass/metal industry companies.

With more than 1,600 employees at 42 locations, CRL generated PBT of $51 million and had gross assets of $290 million at the end of 2014. Its products include architectural and shower door hardware, glass installation tools and supplies, and aluminum storefront and door systems.

Forecasted CRL sales for 2015 are $570 million, on which EBITDA of $115 million is expected. This excludes annual synergies of $40 million, which are expected to be generated by 2017 from the combination with BuildingEnvelope.

“Our job is not done, though,” Friese concluded in his note to employees. “We are so proud to be an integral part of Oldcastle BuildingEnvelope®, and I look forward to your continued efforts to make C.R. Laurence a success and an ever stronger industry leader for future generations.”

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1 Response to CRL Employees Get Valuable “Thank You” Upon Acquisition

  1. Well done and congratulations to Don. I was honored to work for him and it is nice to see the employees rewarded for their hard work. You don’t see too many business owners taking this level of interest in their employees.

    Now go retire Don and get some rest.


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