|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 28, 1999
GREAT LAKES BOAT TOP CO., INC. MERGES WITH MARINE ACCESSORIES
Combined Company Will Pursue Other Marine Industry Acquisitions
VONORE, TN: May 28, 1999. . . . Great Lakes Boat Top Co., Inc., a
leading manufacturer of OEM bimini tops, convertible tops and enclosures
for pleasure boats, today announced that it has filed to merge with
Marine Accessories Corporation, a Phoenix, Arizona-based manufacturer
of boat covers and bimini tops. The newly combined entity will continue
to pursue acquisitions of other marine accessories manufacturers.
Marine Accessories Corporation was formed in October 1998 by Westland
Industries, Inc. and Prospect Partners, LLC, a Chicago-based private
equity firm which manages $105 million in equity capital. Gary L.
Stockford (49), CEO of Marine Accessories Corporation, founded Westland
Industries in 1977. Prior to that he was employed by Great Lakes.
James A. Wilson (41) has become President of Great Lakes and has
also become a director and shareholder of Marine Accessories Corporation.
William C. Rudberg (37) has become Vice President and Plant Manager
of Great Lakes and has also become a shareholder of Marine Accessories
"Westland and Great Lakes have enjoyed a long and great relationship,"
said Stockford. "We are thrilled to be joining forces and I
am personally excited to be able to work closely with Jim Wilson
and Bill Rudberg."
"This merger provides us with substantial financial resources
and a second facility in Phoenix from which to serve our mutual
customers," said Wilson. "We are proud of our growth,
our people and our long history as a family business. All of us
are looking forward to building the business together in the future."