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The Weitz Company Being Sold to Egyptian Construction Firm

General contractor The Weitz Company, which employs about 60 people in Arizona,  announced it has signed a letter of intent for acquisition by Egyptian construction company Orascom Construction Industries.

Based in Des Moines, Iowa, Weitz is the second oldest commercial GC in the United States. Weitz has three core business lines: commercial, federal, and industrial and has typically ranked among the top 50 in Engineering News-Record’s Top 400 Contractors list.

Weitz has 15 offices in the U.S. — including the Arizona office at 5555 E. Van Buren in Phoenix — and Guam. Weitz generated $681.5M of revenue in 2011 and prior to the recent economic downturn generated revenues in excess of $1.5B.

Weitz projects in Arizona include the JW Marriott Starr Pass Resort in Tucson, Mayo Clinic, CityScape, Sagewood (above photo), Scottsdale Waterfront, and a portion of the PHX Sky Train.

All of Weitz’s current management and employees will be retained following the acquisition, according to a release. Terms of the deal were not released.

“This is an excellent opportunity for us to accelerate our growth plan,” Leonard Martling, chairman and CEO of Weitz, said in a release. “Weitz will be able to significantly expand its activities throughout the United States capitalizing on OCI’s financial strength and its industrial and infrastructure track record.

“In addition to our traditional commercial construction projects, we will be better positioned to pursue larger industrial projects and to target infrastructure concessions and Public-Private Partnership (PPP) projects as a part of one of the world’s top global contractors.”

Orascom said the deal will allow it to establish a strong strategic foothold in the U.S. construction market.

“The acquisition of Weitz will allow the OCI Construction Group to be strategically positioned to undertake a variety of commercial, industrial and infrastructure opportunities in the U.S.,” said Osama Bishai, COO of OCI Construction Group.

“Weitz will also provide the OCI Construction Group with a solid base to play a major role in the construction of greenfield industrial projects developed by OCI. Weitz is an excellent construction company and we are excited to be able to provide all the necessary support to enable the management team to grow its business.”

OCI is an international construction contractor and fertilizer producer, employing more than 72,000 people in 35 countries. The OCI Construction Group provides international engineering and construction services primarily on infrastructure, industrial and high-end commercial projects in Europe, the Middle East and North Africa for public and private clients.