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September 12, 2022

Ware-Butler continues expansion with acquisition of Knowles' customer base

supply store COURTESY / WARE-BUTLER Ware-Butler Building Supply, whose Livermore Falls store is shown here, acquired Knowles Lumber.

Waterville-based Ware-Butler Building Supply, owned by Pleasant River Lumber Co., is looking to acquire the customer base Knowles Lumber in North Monmouth as the latter closes its doors.

Ware-Butler's expansion comes after acquisitions last year of Bangor-based Crescent Lumber, Phinney Lumber in Gorham and Puiia Lumber Co. in Mexico.

In the most recent move, Knowles Lumber’s owners, Paul King and Bill Abbott, made the decision to close the business, effective Sept. 2, after a decade of ownership.

The team at Knowles is in the process of liquidating inventory and cleaning up the yard, and will be selling their commercial property on Route 202. Knowles partnered with Ware-Butler’s Livermore Falls location to help support their longtime customers. 

“Paul and I have been friends since elementary school, and we are extremely proud of our endeavor here reviving Knowles Lumber and servicing Winthrop/Monmouth area builders over the past decade,” Abbott said in a new release. “It came down to us reaching a point that we needed to either make significant investments in the business or move in a different direction for us and our families.”

Partnering with Ware-Butler is expected to help the Knowles customers transition “to an up-and-coming Maine building supply company that shares our values of customer service with Maine-based products,” Abbott said.

Terms of the partnership were not disclosed.

Ware-Butler also said it would welcome the owners and employees of Knowles to its workforce.

Ware-Butler’s parent company, Dover-Foxcroft-based Pleasant River Lumber, owns and operates lumber manufacturing facilities in Dover-Foxcroft, Jackman, Enfield ,Hancock and Sanford. It specializes in spruce and fir framing lumber and eastern white pine boards. In addition to the mills, Pleasant River owns Moosehead Cedar Log Homes in Dover, A&A Brochu Trucking in Clinton, Quality Saw Sales and Service in Enfield, and A&A Brochu Logging in Enfield.

Pleasant River’s companies employ a total of 776 people in 18 communities in 10 Maine counties.

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