Two of California's largest independent manufacturers' reps, Ewing-Foley Inc., Cupertino, Calif., and ElectriGroup Inc., Sacramento, Calif., announced a merger that's sure to send shockwaves through the West Coast electrical market.

Ewing-Foley focuses on the electrical, electronics and networking markets and serves California, Oregon, Washington, northern Nevada, Alaska, Montana and northern Idaho markets, while ElectriGroup reps a broad package of lines for the electrical market segment in California, Nevada and Arizona. Ewing-Foley has locations in Auburn, Cupertino and Fullerton, Calif.; Tigard, Ore.; and Kirkland, Wash., while ElectriGroup has locations in Sacramento and Ontario, Calif., and Glendale, Ariz.

Gary Lessing, president, Ewing-Foley, told EW increasing the company's presence in Southern California's massive electrical market is one of the objectives of the merger, but that the deal will also “help the company improve its position in the commercial/utility markets throughout our footprint.”

“We also believe we can improve the position of ElectriGroup's principals in the industrial/OEM segments where we have traditionally been strongest,” he said.

In a press release, Lessing also said, “Joining forces with ElectriGroup represents a significant enhancement to our coverage in the commercial construction markets. This is a segment of keen interest to us, and we see the merger with ElectriGroup as a cornerstone of this growth strategy. We expect our existing manufacturers, distributors and end users will benefit from the additional sales resources and complementary lines that ElectriGroup brings. The merger helps facilitate both companies' shared vision to be leaders in the commercial, industrial and OEM segments of the electrical industry.”

Mike McCollum, ElectriGroup's president, said he believes the association with Ewing-Foley represents new growth potential for ElectriGroup's manufacturing partners. “As we looked forward into the next five years, we believed a merger with Ewing-Foley was the best way to leverage our core competencies and become part of a larger, more relevant sales organization that serves all segments of the electrical industry.”