A four-generation Milaca business has joined a new family.

Chris and Randy Kotsmith have sold Milaca Building Center, and its sister business Foley Lumber, to American Construction Source. American Construction Source (ACS), based in Springfield, Missouri, operates more than 70 building centers in nine states. The ACS acquisition was backed by Angeles Equity Partners, LLC and Clearlake Capital Group, L.P.

“We are confident ACS, Angeles, and Clearlake are the best partners to help accelerate growth by delivering more value-added products and an expanded portfolio of services in North Central Minnesota and the greater Minneapolis St. Paul metro area,” Milaca and Foley owners Chris Kotsmith and Randy Kotsmith said in a prepared statement.

“ACS’s technology investments and national scale will enable Foley and Milaca to better serve our customers for generations to come,” the Kotsmiths stated.

The local business began in 1932, when the cousins Chris and Randy Kotsmith’s great-grandfather Frank Kotsmith started a coal and wood business that operated out of the old potato warehouses and pickle factory buildings where the present office building of Foley Lumber is located. Frank Kotsmith’s sons William L. and Terrance Kotsmith eventually became partners in the business. The Kotsmith brothers assumed ownership of Foley Lumber in 1965 when their father William E. Kotsmith retired from the lumber business.

The brothers incorporated the business in 1969. Milaca Building Center has been serving the Milaca community since 1979, when William L. and Terrance Kotsmith bought Don Johnson Lumber in Milaca.

After William L. and Terrance Kotsmith retired in 1993 and 1998, respectively, their sons Chris and Randy purchased their fathers’ shares of the business. The cousins are the ones who sold the businesses to ACS.

“The ACS team welcomes Foley and Milaca to our national platform of service-oriented lumber and building materials locations,” said James Drexinger, CEO of ACS in a prepared statement. “The Kotsmith family has built a great business over generations, and we respect the customer relationships they have fostered for the last 90 years.”

ACS operates eight Arrow Building Centers in Minnesota, the closest being in Big Lake at 14813 162nd Ave. SE.


Jeff Hage is the managing editor of the Monticello Times. He majored in journalism at the University of Wisconsin- Eau Claire.

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