Houston firm moves into Eagle Ford with trucking buys

Houston-based Leslie Doggett Industries has acquired multiple South Texas heavy equipment and truck companies for $30 million.

The purchases give Leslie Doggett a footprint to serve the Eagle Ford Shale region, with service centers and dealerships in San Antonio, Laredo and McAllen.

The acquisitions bring the number of full-time employees to 900 and increase the company’s estimated annual revenues higher than $700 million. Doggett Truck Group, a division of Leslie Doggett Industries, made the purchase.

The acquisitions include three Freightliner and one Western Star Truck Dealership from the Opus Kane Truck Group and Eddy Vaughn Freightliner. Both purchases were final in December – the San Antonio and Laredo purchases from Opus Kane on Dec. 16 and the McAllen purchase of Eddy Vaughn Freightliner on Dec. 19.

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Leslie Doggett Industries has 18 John Deere dealerships and provides construction and forestry products for Louisiana, East and Southeast Texas and the Gulf Coast from New Orleans to Brownsville. The company is also a Toyota Industrial Equipment dealer, with eight dealerships in the southern half of Texas and in Chihuahua in Mexico.

The company’s other acqusitions in recent years include $62 million for the Houston John Deere Construction Equipment Business from Rush Enterprises in 2010. In 2007, it purchased 11 dealerships for $103 million from Nortrax, the company-owned stores operated by John Deere & Company.

“This acquisition complements Leslie Doggett’s existing John Deere construction and forestry dealerships and our Toyota forklift business, allowing contractors doing business in South Texas to have a single source provider of heavy equipment sales, maintenance, repair and rental services expanded to now include heavy haul and highway trucks,” said Brian McLemore, chief financial officer with Doggett, in a press release.

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