General Shale Purchases Summitville Tiles

SUMMITVILLE, Ohio – After more than 100 years, Summitville Tiles Inc. will be under new ownership.

Summitville CEOs Dave and Bruce Johnson announced Wednesday the company is being sold to General Shale of Johnson City, Tennessee.

Dave Johnson called recent collaborations between the two companies very positive, as they have worked together over the past year. He added the change will mean millions invested in the company.

The details of the sale are not being disclosed, but the name Summitville Tiles will remain, as well as the management team and the 150 employees who have made the company successful, according to Dave Johnson.

The business has been owned by the Johnson family since it was purchased by F.H. Johnson in 1921. It was founded as the Summit Brick Co. in 1912 and renamed The Summitville Face Brick Co., evolving to become a high-grade commercial and residential face brick producer.

Through the years, the company grew from hand digging shale to create bricks in beehive ovens to the cutting edge of automation and advancements in tile manufacturing.

A second generation of the Johnson family, Fred and Pete Johnson, took over the company in 1947, renaming it Summitville Tiles Inc. and growing it into one of the leading tile producers in America. Summitville Laboratories was launched in 1980 as the company continued to expand products, including what is needed for installation.

By the 1990s, a third generation of the family, Peter, Bruce and Dave Johnson, led the company. Today, Jeff Johnson represents the fourth generation as the national sales manager.

Dave Johnson said he and his brother Bruce will remain in their leadership roles with the company, and Jeff Johnson will continue to serve as national sales manager.

General Shale is nearly as old as Summitville Tile, founded in 1928, and is the subsidiary of Wienerberger AG, headquartered in Vienna, Austria, the world’s largest producer of clay brick. 

General Shale operates 28 manufacturing facilities, 26 retail stores and a network of more than 200 partnering distributors throughout the U.S. and Canada. General Shale offers a large array of sizes, colors and textures, providing masonry materials for residential, commercial and specialty architectural projects.

“Summitville offers products unique to our portfolio, while further strengthening us as the market leader for thin brick solutions,” said Charles Smith, CEO of General Shale. “This acquisition is an important step in furthering our position as a complete and sustainable solutions provider for the building envelope in North America.”

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