TEC Forms Alliance With Leading Producer of Poles

September 23, 2022

Texas Electric Cooperatives entered into an agreement Sept. 15 with Stella-Jones to purchase TEC’s wood pole manufacturing plant in Jasper.

TEC will continue to own and manage the alliance pole inventory at the 40-plus pole yards across the state, and TEC will have an exclusive arrangement with Stella-Jones to provide value-added distribution services and market representation for all TEC members. TEC members will have priority access to the company’s production capacity.

“After extensive evaluation and discussions with the TEC Manufacturing & Distribution Services committee and the TEC Board of Directors, it was determined that continuing to manufacture poles on such a small scale was not in the best interests of the association’s members,” said Mike Williams, TEC president and CEO. “We are pleased to affiliate with an organization like Stella-Jones and expect to close before the end of the year.”

TEC’s competitive position in the pole market had significantly eroded, due primarily to major mergers and acquisitions. The plant’s wood quality control program will continue.

“TEC looked at several options and concluded that the alliance with SJ satisfied numerous objectives, including keeping the Jasper plant open, preserving local jobs and, most importantly, ensuring that TEC can continue to provide competitively priced high-quality poles to our members,” Williams said. “The SJ alliance adds industry knowledge and expertise in environmental risk management, enhanced raw goods procurement, plant operations and manufacturing, and quality assurance for the benefit of TEC members.”

Stella-Jones is North America’s leading producer of pressure-treated wood products. It supplies all the continent’s major electrical utilities and telecommunication companies with wood poles and North America’s Class 1, short line and commercial railroad operators with railway ties and timbers.

“We look forward to welcoming the Jasper facility employees to our team of over 2,400 employees across North America,” said Eric Vachon, president and CEO of Stella-Jones.