July 5, 2007
Kenworth trucks join Papé business offerings
The group buys five truck dealerships headquartered in central California
By Tim Christie
The Papé Group has added Kenworth trucks to its rugged line-up of heavy equipment and aircraft.
The Eugene-based industrial conglomerate said it has acquired Central California Kenworth, including its five dealerships in Bakersfield, Fresno, Stockton, Paso Robles and Madera, and created a new division called Papé Trucks.
The purchase price was not disclosed. Company officials were unavailable for comment Tuesday.
“Papé Trucks further strengthens the Papé presence in markets where we already serve the capital equipment needs of our customers,” Randy Papé, president and CEO of The Papé Group, said in a statement.
The acquisition of the Kenworth dealerships is not Papé’s first foray into the truck business. In 2003, the company announced it would distribute Freightliner-brand Sterling and Western State trucks in Oregon.
The privately held Papé business empire does business in seven Western states. Its various divisions sell and service heavy equipment such as backhoes and bulldozers; materials handling equipment, such as forklifts and shelving; smaller equipment such as ditchdiggers and tractors; and aircraft.
Edward Papé founded the company in 1938, selling Allis-Chalmers tractors from a store on East Fifth Avenue in downtown Eugene. Brothers Dean and Ed Papé ran the company in the post-war years. Randy Papé took over in the mid-1980s, the third generation of his family to lead the company.
In addition to their trucking, heavy equipment and aircraft businesses, the Papé family controls Liberty Financial Group, which includes Liberty Bank; Sanipac, a garbage-hauling and recycling firm; and EcoSort, a recyclable goods processing company.