Cianbro, a large employee-owned construction company based in Pittsfield, Maine, has announced the acquisition of A/Z Corporation, the North Stonington engineering-construction firm. 

Cianbro said that A/Z, which had been sole proprietorship, will be a wholly-owned subsidiary and retain its name. Its owner, Perry Lorenz, will remain as president of A/Z Corporation. All of A/Z's 500 employees will join the Cianbro team and its Employee Stock Ownership Plan. 

The announcement was made Tuesday by Cianbro CEO Andi Vigue, who noted that the companies had "very similar philosophies toward people, operating culture, workplace safety, and towards their respective clients."
Founded in 1949, Cianbro has 4,000 workers in 41 states and is ranked among the top 100 U.S. construction companies, according to the Engineering News Record. The company handles industrial, manufacturing, infrastructure, power and energy projects, and, like A/Z, is vertically integrated. 

Richard Brescia, vice president of Cianbro, said that A/Z  "is well respected in the industry and it excels in higher education, manufacturing, science and technology, health care, mission-critical and energy markets."

 Lorenz said, “I first worked around Cianbro when I was working for my father in 1986 on a job site in Southeastern Connecticut. I learned quickly that we have a lot in common ... Joining the Cianbro family creates greater stability and sustainability for our employees and clients. It also means that nothing will change in our current working relationships.  Knowing that this transition results in stability while keeping our operational strategies intact is a perfect scenario."

Lorenz, who is 55, said the decision to join Cianbro was part of his succession planning. The company began as A/Z Electric Inc. in 1968 and changed its name to A/Z Corporation in 1994. It has additional offices in Hartford, Westborough, Mass., and East Windsor, N.J., and an office and fabrication facility in Hopkinton.

Founded in 1949 by the Cianchette Brothers, Cianbro is the 30th largest employee-owned company in the U.S. 

Some of A/Z's recent projects are the Thompson Exhibit Building at the Mystic Seaport Museum; the new hotel at the Twin River Casino; the Regional Operations Center for Yale-New Haven Health in Orange, Conn.; new buildings for Electric Boat at Quonset Point; and the Earth Expo & Convention Center at Mohegan Sun, just to name a few. It has also been chosen as the pre-construction manager for the National Coast Guard Museum planned for  New London.

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