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Bobcat sale to Korean company complete

Bobcat's new owners say bigger and better things are in the company's future. "We are firmly committed to (Bobcat's) factories and people in North Dakota, and our plan is to grow the business," said David Rowles, chief executive officer of Doosan...

Image: Bocat loader outside gwinner plant

Bobcat's new owners say bigger and better things are in the company's future.

"We are firmly committed to (Bobcat's) factories and people in North Dakota, and our plan is to grow the business," said David Rowles, chief executive officer of Doosan Infracore International.

South Korea-based Doosan Infracore announced Friday that it has completed its purchase of Bobcat from Bermuda-based Ingersoll-Rand, which had owned Bobcat since 1995.

The sale, for $4.9 billion, was announced in late July.

Bobcat produces skid-steer loaders and employs 2,600 people in plants in Gwinner and Bismarck.

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Doosan will retain Bobcat's West Fargo headquarters, Rowles said.

Rowles, a 30-year Ingersoll-Rand employee, said Bobcat is an excellent fit for Doosan's growth plans.

Gwinner residents are "upbeat and positive" about the new owners, said Jeff Anderson, the city's economic development coordinator.

"Doosan seems to be a real good company that wants good things for our plant," he said.

Founded in 1937, Doosan Infracore is South Korea's top construction and machinery equipment company. It has sales of about

$4 billion annually.

Bobcat had about $2.6 billion in revenues in 2006.

Doosan Infracore becomes one of the world's 10 biggest manufacturers of construction and utility equipment and related attachments.

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It now has more than 3,500 dealers nationwide and 20 manufacturing plants in the United States, Europe and China.

"With the completion of this transaction, Doosan is extremely well-positioned to become a true global leader in the construction equipment sector," Yongmaan Park, vice chairman of Doosan Infracore said in a news release.

Readers can reach Forum reporter Jonathan Knutson at (701) 241-5530

Bobcat sale to Korean company complete Jon Knutson 20071201

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