Young company expanding againIt was a smart move when Northshore Manufacturing decided to shift its focus shortly after it was founded from timber harvesting to waste reduction and recycling.
By: Monica Isley, Lake County News Chronicle
It was a smart move when Northshore Manufacturing decided to shift its focus shortly after it was founded from timber harvesting to waste reduction and recycling.
"Garbage always has to be handled," said Uwe Kausch, marketing and international sales manager for the Two Harbors company.
As a result, when many firms are laying people off and even shutting down for the winter due to the current recession, Northshore Manufacturing is adding 29,000 square feet of manufacturing and office space, bringing the total to about 55,000 square feet. That comes after doubling the size of the facility just two years ago.
"Morale is real good here," Kausch said this week. "You watch the news, we're in a recession. But we're busy. The guys can even work overtime if they want to."
Kausch said the firm also deals in the scrap industry, which has slowed down somewhat. But the waste handling business keeps moving along.
"On the east coast they're not using landfills at all any more," Kausch said.
The expansion will allow all of the departments to be housed on one site. The paint shop, currently in a separate location on Scenic 61, will become a state-of-the-art facility. Also included in the expansion will be a new assembly area and additional room for CNC machining centers and, in the future, robotic welding centers.
The old paint shop will be put up for sale in the near future.
Northshore Manufacturing was founded in 1989. It's products are described as knuckle boom material handlers.
In January 2000, an ESOP plan was formed between Northshore Manufacturing and its employees providing employee ownership equal to their percentage of stock ownership. Currently, employees own 60 percent with the original owners, John Anderson and Bob Matteson, owning the remainder. Over time, Kausch said, their percentage will decrease further until it is a 100 percent ESOP owned company.
"The ESOP stock value grew 63 percent this year and we anticipate 16 percent growth for next year," Kausch said.
Along with the expansion, several key, newly created positions have been filled, including the following:
• Scott Anderson, chief financial officer. Anderson joins the company after working at W. P. Mars and Co., in Duluth. He has a degree in accounting and is a certified management accountant.
• Ean Kuhlmey, midwestern regional sales. He held a similar position with Maurer Manufacturing, Spencer, Iowa.
• Srini Palaniappan, industrial/operations engineer. Palaniappan, who formerly worked at Stanley LaBounty in Two Harbors, is responsible for lean manufacturing and process improvement projects within the company.
• Uwe Kausch, who also comes from Stanley LaBounty, and holds a variety of positions within the sales and marketing departments. He also develops overseas business opportunities.
Northshore Manufacturing will celebrate its 20th anniversary in 2009. More information is available on the website that is currently being updated. It is www.builtritehandlers.com.