Mueller Industries, Inc. (Mueller) is a global manufacturer and provider of copper, plastic, brass, and aluminum products. These products include copper and brass alloy rod, copper tube and fittings, bar and shapes; aluminum and copper impact extrusions; aluminum and brass forgings, plastic fittings and valves; fabricated tubular products and refrigeration valves and fittings. The Company also in the area of reselling imported brass and various plastic plumbing valves, , steel nipples, malleable iron fittings, faucets and plumbing products.
Mueller has its operations in the United States, and in Mexico, Great Britain, Canada and China. The businesses of the Company are operated in two segments. One is, the Plumbing & Refrigeration segment and the second is, the Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEM) segment. The Plumbing & Refrigeration segment again has three divisions such as SPD (Standard Products Division), Mexican Operations division and European Operations division. The Original Equipment Manufacturers segment has two divisions such as IPD (Industrial Products Division) and EPD (Engineered Products Division). In 2007 company acquired a Michigan based company, Extruded Metals, Inc. (Extruded).
The company was incorporated in October 1990. In 2002, the company sold out its subsidiary Utah Railway Company. The companies share was traded on New York Stock Exchange under the ticker “MLI”.
The consolidated net sales of the company were $2.5 billion in 2006 which is 45% higher than that of $1.7 billion net sales in financial year 2005. The increase has been attributed to high raw material costs and contribution from acquiring businesses in 2005.
The Company has following two businesses segments
Plumbing & Refrigeration Segment
Mueller’s Plumbing & Refrigeration segment includes various divisions such as SPD, that manufactures various copper tubes, in various sizes ranging from 0.125 inches to 8 inches in diameter, and which is used in various coils and straight lengths. Apart from this, Mueller provides a range of water tube in coils and straight lengths used for commercial and domestic plumbing applications in several types of projects. SPD also provides plastic and copper fittings and various other related components and products for plumbing and various heating industry that are used in heating systems, water distribution systems, air conditioning, drainage, waste, refrigeration applications and vent systems. This segment also provides steel pipe nipples and resells plastic and brass plumbing valves, faucets, malleable iron fittings and other plumbing products to plumbing distributors, wholesalers, recreational vehicle industries and recreational vehicle industries. This segment markets its product through own distributions and sales throughout US and in Mexico, Europe and Canada. Products are also marketed and sold by various agents.
In August 2005, Company acquired all stock of KX Company Limited (Brassware). It is an England based distributor and manufacturer of residential heating and plumbing products. In August 2004 Company also acquired Vemco Brasscapri Limited (Vemco). It is also an England based company which provides plumbing products. In 2007 the Vemco and Brassware were combines under the brand name of Mueller Primaflow.
The Company competes with several companies, domestic competitor are Cerro Flow Products, Inc., Wolverine Tube, Inc., Cambridge-Lee Industries (Reading Tube Corporation), Howell Metal Company, NIBCO, Inc, Elkhart Products Company, and Charlotte Pipe & Foundry and several other foreign competitors.
The Company’s OEM segment includes IPD, which is primarily into manufacturing nonferrous forgings, brass rods and impact extrusions. These are sold mostly to OEMs, which are catering to refrigeration, plumbing, automotive and fluid power industries. They also supply to other manufacturers and distributors. The Company produces bronze, brass and copper alloys of sizes ranging from diameter of 0.375 inches to 4 inches from its Michigan mill in Port Huron. These alloys have application in areas where there is requirement of mach inability of high degree, good resistance to wear & corrosion and also in electricity conductivity. The company also manufactures aluminum and brass forgings. These are used in various types of products, which include automotive components, industrial machinery, brass fittings, valve bodies, computer hardware, and gear blanks.
The company also serves industries like military ordinance, automotive, general manufacturing and aerospace industries through its copper extrusions and cold formed aluminum. In addition, the company also manufactures formed and shaped tube, which is manufactured with high tolerances, for appliances, baseboard heating and medical instruments. This segment of IPD also includes the EPD. It fabricates and manufactures custom OEM products and valves for air-conditioning and refrigeration applications. Both EPD and IPD sell to OEM customers directly.
The main competitors of the company are Chase Industries, Inc and Cerro Metal Products Company, Inc.
The company’s standard products are copper tube, line sets, steel pipe, ABS & PVC DWV fittings, copper fittings, fittings for pressure plastic, drain and sewer fittings, nipples and metallic fittings, valves and faucets and specialties.
The company’s industrial division has products which include brass rod, forgings, refrigeration / Air conditioning and Impact.