Business

Anacortes firm buys Copeland Lumber

"Photo: Copeland Lumber employees Scott Schult and Jowell Alano will be among those to work for the lumberyard's new owner, Frontier Industries.Matt Johnson/staff photoThere will not be a lumber war in Freeland.After announcing early this month that it will build a new lumber yard in Freeland, Anacortes' Frontier Industries began negotiating the final stages of a deal to purchase Copeland Lumber Yard's business this week.Chuck Posey, the operations manager for Frontier, said Wednesday his company is on schedule in its buyout of the Freeland business' inventory and goodwill. Frontier plans to hire most or all of the employees currently working at the yard, Posey said, and will operate its business there until its new lumberyard is completed on Scott Road in 2001. Frontier is not purchasing the building or land owned by Copeland. Nick Buschko, manager of the Freeland Copeland, said Wednesday that his staff plans to close the yard under the Copeland name for the last time on April 6. The yard will reopen as a Frontier Industries yard on April 10.Although the hiring situation is not set in stone yet, Buschko said he hopes all 13 Copeland employees will have jobs after the corporate changeover.Doing business in Freeland since 1983, Copeland gets approximately 80 percent of its business from local contractors, Buschko said. The Copeland chain, which once numbered 63 stores, began a selling off its lumber yards last year. There are still 27 yards operating under the Copeland banner.Frontier Industries also operates a number of lumber yards, including yards in Anacortes and Oak Harbor. Its future Freeland yard, which is to be located next to Teddy's restaurant, will be approximately 80,000 square-feet in size."

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