GRAND RAPIDS — Irwin Seating Co. signed a letter of intent to purchase American Seating Co.’s architectural fixed seating business in a deal expected to close in March 2017, pending due diligence.
Grand Rapids-based American Seating decided to sell the business because the seasonality of large projects poses an “increasing number of operational challenges,” President and COO Tom Bush said in a statement.
American Seating’s architectural fixed seating business includes products for stadiums, auditoriums and other large venues.
The company’s decision to divest a “higher profile part of our business was an extremely difficult decision to make,” Chairman and CEO Ed Clark said in a statement announcing the transaction. Clark noted the company was “pleased” to find a “strategic, local buyer” to take over the division.
The sale comes as American Seating seeks “to optimize its operations and resources in order to pursue significant growth opportunities” in its transportation seating business, where the company will continue to focus.
American Seating intends to lay off 80 workers early this year as a result of the deal. However, a portion of that workforce may transition into roles at Irwin Seating, according to the statement.
Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Grand Rapids-based Irwin Seating manufacturers seating for movie theaters, auditoriums, stadiums and other large venues.