The exterior of Hy-Brid Lifts Custom Equipment in
Richfield. The business was recently bought by a
John Ehlke/Conley News
Custom Equipment established itself in West Bend in 1981
as a welding and fabrication business, developing its
first lifts for the cemetery and mausoleum markets.
company was acquired by Stratford-Cambridge Group, Hy-Brid Lifts
Custom Equipment had already spread into the construction and
industrial markets. After 36 years, they have a full product range
of scissor lifts and aerial work platforms.
A deal was
agreed upon in late October.
company, though sold to a private equity firm, will remain in their
hands to some extent. They will hold a 20 percent stake in the
business. A news release from the firms explains they will partner
with the family to help them continue to grow on their current
started this business over 36 years ago and are very proud of what
we’ve built and the relationships that we’ve made,” Founder Steve
Kissinger said in a news release. “... we are happy to announce our
partnership with Stratford-Cambridge Group.
“They see value
in our products and understand the rich history that we have
developed over the years with our customers, vendors and employees.
We see this as a great opportunity to continue growing the company,
while continuing to maintain those relationships.”
Michigan-based firm also previously acquired Fluid Air Controls LLC,
Sterling Technologies, Inc, Speedgrip Chuck Co. and Aetna Bearing
Co. The firm’s website states those who sell to them are given an
exit strategy, will see an emphasis on continued growth, see unique
needs addressed and be given opportunities as an investor in the
president Mike Reichert said funding from the firm will help with
continued growth. He added the funding would go to additional
equipment and facilities.
the business operates out of have been on the market for more than
two years and as growth continues the goal is to find a larger
space. Reichert said the preference for a facility is within the
county as that’s where their workforce lives.
The equity firm
focuses on making controlling investments in manufacturing companies
with earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization
between $1 million - $5 million.
In an email,
Stratford-Cambridge vice president Emily Bertsche said, “The company
will remain in the same location in Richfield and West Bend with the
According to the
firm’s website, certain employees will receive equity investment
opportunities, performance rewards and access to additional capital.
started in West Bend on North Main Street, after some growth it
moved to Progress Drive and that site remains a location for
manufacturing scissor lifts.
In 2010, the
corporate headquarters moved to Richfield.