Vigor merging with Oregon Iron Works

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Oregon Iron Works and Vigor Industrial said Wednesday they are forming a combined company that will employ about 2,300 workers in the Pacific Northwest.

Oregon Iron Works will become a subsidiary of Vigor Industrial, the privately held companies said in a joint statement that did not include specific terms of the merger.

The firms, both based in the Portland area, said joining Oregon Iron Works' fabrication abilities with Vigor's shipbuilding and marine-launch capabilities allows them to complete large-scale projects that neither company could do alone. That combination, they say, gives them a chance to enter new markets and win more work.

"Not only will diversification allow us to better weather the ups and downs of the marine industry, incorporating good fabrication genetics from non-marine sectors is a great way to achieve world-class shipbuilding standards in the U.S.," Vigor CEO Frank Foti said. "It's industrial evolution, and it's what our economy needs."

The companies expect the merger to be finalized before July. The Federal Trade Commission and the U.S. Department of Justice must approve it.

Vigor spokesman Brian Mannion said there are no short-term plans to cut workers because of redundancies.

"We're going to be looking at ways to really align the support functions — like IT, finance, that type of stuff — but that's not about reductions. It's about putting together the groups in the best possible configurations to serve this larger, more diverse (company)," Mannion said.

Besides Portland, Vigor operates at several locations in the Puget Sound area as well as Ketchikan, Alaska. The company is also buying a small shipyard in Seward, Alaska, Mannion said.

05/22/2014 - 6:06am