An Augusta brickyard in operation since the 19th century is now part of the world’s largest supplier of building materials.
With the finalized acquisition of Meridian Brick from the multinational Boral Ltd. and a subsidiary of Lone Star Funds, the company with a local factory on Arthern Road is now part of General Shale, which signed the purchase agreement to acquire Meridian last December.
The Augusta plant is one of 17 Meridian sites that have become the property of General Shale, the largest masonry supplier in North America. General Shale is the North American subsidiary of the international building materials company Wienerberger AG of Vienna.
General Shale announced the acquisition on Wednesday. Financial terms of the deal were not immediately disclosed.
Locally, the factory began in 1899 as the Merry Brothers Brick and Tile Co., founded by Ernest, Walter and Arthur Merry. The company grew with the purchase of more brickyards and became Merry Companies Inc. in 1968, nine years after its stock was floated on the stock market.
Boral Bricks bought Merry in 1981, then merged in 2017 with Forterra Brick, based in Charlotte, North Carolina, to become Meridian Brick.
At the time of the 2017 merger, the 40 employees at the Augusta plant were producing around 120 million clay bricks per year.
Meridian Brick operates 20 manufacturing plants and 27 distribution centers across North America with over 1,000 employees.