UNITED KINGDOM - C.R. Laurence of Europe Ltd. to Commence Construction of New Headquarters, Office and Warehousing Building in United Kingdom
October 15, 2009

The ground breaking of this new 71,000-square-foot facility is scheduled to take place October 26. The new building will include office and warehouse space.

C.R. Laurence of Europe, Ltd. (CRL) announced the expansion of its European operation with the construction of a new headquarters, including office and warehousing at Rochdale's Kingsway Business Park, located in a prime industrial/commercial area near Manchester. The ground breaking of this 71,000-square-foot bespoke facility is scheduled to take place October 26.

Earlier this year, the company acquired Rochdale-based Ebor. Founded in 1981 by Stephen Boocock and three partners, the company was a well known supplier of accessories, tools and machinery to the glazing and stone industries throughout the UK. Simon Boocock is now managing director of C.R. Laurence's Europe operation, which also includes a major base near Stuttgart, Germany.

"It is an exciting time for C.R. Laurence with these major expansion plans. We chose Kingsway Business Park, because it is a prestigious development set within a pleasant environment, which will continue to grow and develop," says Boocock. "Located directly next to Junction 21 of the M62, the park offers an excellent strategic location for national and international businesses. It is also close to our existing UK offices, making it ideal for our employees and visiting customers."

Simon Boocock, managing director of C.R. Laurence's Europe operation, on the right, with Robert Grafton (left) development director of Wilson Bowden Developments - developer of Kingsway Business Park where the headquarters will be constructed.

In making the announcement, Donald E. Friese, chief executive officer of CRL, says, "We see the acquisition of Ebor and the construction of this new headquarters as the official launch of our European strategy. This new facility will act as the European headquarters for CRL Europe, and will be responsible for that operation, as well as our expanded CRL operation in Germany, where we recently purchased and updated a 36,000-square-foot facility in the Stuttgart area. We believe that our substantial investments in facilities in both the UK and Germany will make CRL one of the best suppliers to the glazing industry in Europe with more than 137,000 square feet of floor space dedicated to distribution of its extensive line of products."

Approximately a dozen new jobs at CRL will be created in the first year, four of which have already been established, ranging from warehousing to technical sales with the capacity to take on many more people as the business expands within the European market. The former Ebor premises at Gorrels Way in Rochdale, with more than 37,700 square feet of space, and which currently employs 55 people, will also be retained with the majority of staff relocating to Kingsway Business Park when construction of the premises completes next summer.

The new headquarters facility in Kingsway will incorporate CRL's shipping equipment and information technology systems used throughout the company, worldwide, to manage the 50,000-item product line. The facility will also accommodate a large inventory and a Trade Counter (Will Call) that will allow customers to pick up orders on site, view the wide assortment of catalogs and meet with technical advisors. The Trade Counter will also include a showroom display area where customers can see many of the company's newest products.

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