Rob Stenson started his first company at
the age of nineteen, later earning his MBA from Western University. In 1995, he
joined his brother Art Stenson’s company, Batco Manufacturing (Batco), in Swift
Current, as Vice President. Gary Anderson joined Batco as G.M. and in 1996,
with sales growing, they established Ag Growth Industries – now, Ag Growth
International (AGI) – as a holding company. In 1998, AGI acquired Wheatheart
Manufacturing, a Saskatoon based manufacturer of speciality agricultural
Looking to expand the company, AGI
approached Westfield Industries (Westfield), an established leader in grain auger
manufacturing. Westfield was acquired in May 2000, and offered AGI access to an
extensive dealer network, substantial manufacturing capabilities and the
strength of a widely recognized and respected brand name.
AGI issued an Initial Public Offering in
May 2004. In the six years following incorporation, AGI adhered to its strategy
of growth through catalogue expansion and geographic diversification with the
purchases of Edwards Group (Grain Guard, Keho), Hi Roller®, Twister and Union
Near the end of 2010, Tramco of Wichita,
Kansas joined AGI. Shortly followed by Airlanco in October 2011 and in February
2014, the REM GrainVac product line was acquired.
In May 2015, AGI completed the largest
acquisition in the company’s history with Westeel. This acquisition solidified
AGI’s market leading platform to deliver unparalleled service and the broadest
product catalogue in markets close to home.
The addition of PTM Technology and FRAME
through the Westeel acquisition fulfilled a continued goal of the company to
expand through offshore opportunities in international markets.
Nearing the end of 2015, AGI made two
significant announcements. The first, President & CEO, Gary Anderson
announced his retirement and the appointment of Tim Close as his successor.
Since AGI’s inception, Gary has been a driving force behind the company’s
strategic decisions, the acquisition and integration of fifteen business units,
the development of AGI’s people and the company’s ongoing operational
performance and improvement.
Tim joined AGI in 2012 as Vice President,
Strategic Development and was promoted to President in March 2015. He has been
integral to a number of key strategic initiatives including the company’s entry
into Brazil and the acquisition of Westeel.
During this time, AGI entered the
fertilizer sector through their acquisition of VIS. The addition of fertilizer
to AGI’s product catalogue represents a new and significant opportunity. The
fertilizer sector has complementary demand characteristics when combined with
our grain businesses and brings diversification and risk mitigation while
expanding services to many existing customers.
In early 2016, AGI was hard at work to continue
its growth and finally entered Brazil in a meaningful way through the
acquisition of Entringer S.A. This addition has allowed AGI to meet the grain
processing market with solutions tailored to their specific market.
Following the Entringer acquisition, AGI
made an additional acquisition to add to their growing fertilizer platform with
NuVision Industries. This deal extended AGI’s services and capabilities and
allows for turnkey fertilizer facilities.
During the beginning of Q3, Mitchell Mill Systems (MMS) was
acquired by AGI. MMS specializes in the manufacturing of feed, grain, pet
food, fertilizer, seed cleaning and industrial facilities. In addition to this,
Mitchell fabricates its own line of material handling equipment and speciality
Ending the year on a high note, AGI closed the acquisition of Yargus. Based in Marshall, Illinois, Yargus is known for producing custom blending and equipment for industrial and fertilizer applications in a variety of capacities. Sold under the brand name, Layco, their product line includes premium batch blending and material handling for dry materials including declining weight systems, tapered vertical blenders, rotary drum blenders, towers, bucket elevators and multiple conveying options.
As 2017 gets underway, AGI continually strives to be the global market leader in grain handling, conditioning and storage equipment, measured foremost by productivity. This vision is supported by the top quality division and an ongoing commitment to agriculture and growth.