The Seattle division of a Japanese forestry and home-building company has bought a 50 percent equity stake in Southlake-based Bloomfield Homes, the company said Monday.Sumitomo Forestry Seattle is a subsidiary of Toyko-based Sumitomo Forestry Co., a company founded in 1691, according to its website.Terms of the deal were not disclosed.Don Dykstra, Bloomfield Homes president, said that he will continue in that role with the company and that Bloomfield will run the business.“What it means for us is we’ve got a new partner,” Dykstra said. “To me this is the best of all worlds because we get access to their financial strength and can grow the business to its full potential using our current team and business model.”Bloomfield Homes, founded in 2004, reported 2012 sales of $89 million and 400 closings. It is considered the eighth-largest home builder in the region. Bloomfield Homes said it expects to close on 600 homes this year, with sales reaching $135 million.Bloomfield Homes builds in nearly two dozen Metroplex communities. Homes mostly range from $200,000 to $300,000 in price and target the move-up buyer. In Tarrant County, Bloomfield Homes bought 31 acres in north Fort Worth at Keller-Haslet Road and Park Vista Boulevard this year and 42 acres on South Main Street in Mansfield last fall.Ted Wilson, a principal in the Dallas-based consulting firm Residential Strategies, said the deal is good for both companies. It gives Sumitomo Forestry a growth area and Bloomfield Homes capital for expansion.Wilson said he doesn’t expect many changes for Bloomfield Homes, other than a stronger balance sheet. Sumitomo Forestry said it has been expanding overseas and targeting the U.S. housing industry. The company said it saw Dallas-Fort Worth as an area that “promises robust housing demand.”“While it conducts housing business in Seattle, growth in that area is constricted by its geographical limitation of being surrounded by the sea and mountains,” the company said. “The Dallas-Fort Worth metropolitan area is 2.5 times larger in market size compared to Seattle with 7 million people and 20,000 new housing starts in 2012.” With the Bloomfield Homes deal, Sumitomo said it will aim to close 1,500 homes annually in the U.S.Sumitomo Forestry also owns a 50 percent equity stake in Australian home builder Henley Properties, which builds in Seattle under the MainVue brand. MainVue recently bought two sites in Frisco and one in McKinney, Wilson said.Sumitomo also builds in China and South Korea, its website says.This is the third sale of a DFW home builder this year. In January, Taylor Morrison of Scottsdale, Ariz., bought Darling Homes, which builds in several communities including Arlington. In May, Ryland Homes of California bought the DFW operations of LionsGate Homes, which builds in Arlington, Mansfield and the Dallas area.
Sandra Baker, 817-390-7727 Twitter: @SandraBakerFWST