About the Gleason Group

The Gleason Corporation is a domestic manufacturer of low-technology, niche products sold to major OEMs, industrial users and consumers. Founded over fifty years ago, Gleason remains wholly-owned by the original founder and members of his family. Established as a demonstrably strong and capable company, Gleason is eager to expand further. Its history is one of acquiring marginally profitable or troubled companies, building them into profitable units, consolidating them with the team of Gleason companies, and then repeating the process. Growth has been solid and consistent. Gleason has become the industry leader in most of its product lines. Gleason's diverse manufacturing operations create a variety of products for consumer and industrial applications. All of these operations are fully integrated to maximize manufacturing efficiencies and to capitalize on large scale raw material purchase opportunities.
Gleason was founded in 1946 to market replacement wheels to consumers through the hardware trade. The approach was unique, innovative and resourceful ­ the style that still characterizes the company. The Gleason Companies manufacture products for OEMs, industrial customers and consumers. Their largest markets are OEMs in the outdoor power equipment, lawn and garden, material handling and the mass merchandisers of consumer products. Gleason has attained leading positions in its markets. It is the largest independent producer of small, low-speed wheels in the United States and a dominant producer in each of its niche markets for its other products. Gleason is a fully integrated manufacturer. Within each product group, Gleason converts basic raw materials to manufacture the products and either sells them to outside customers or to another Gleason Division for use as a component part.
A privately-owned company, with over 1,300 employees, Gleason has corporate headquarters in Los Angeles, sales offices in the Midwest, manufacturing plants in the Midwest and the East. Gleason currently has operating companies in five different states. Gleason has extensive, modern facilities for, steel stamping and forming, arc welding, multiple and single spot resistance welding, tubular steel forming, powder coating, textile cutting and sewing, and mass production assembly. With major tubular steel fabrication capabilities, Gleason manufactures tubular steel parts for a wide range of proprietary products including material handling equipment, lawn and garden equipment, hammock stands and leisure products. Gleason has focused on a balanced growth strategy through both internal expansion and selective acquisitions.
The Gleason Group of Companies is low-profile, quiet and professional. Emphasis is placed on being flexible, maneuverable and lean. Reaction is swift to customer demands and to marketing trends today, just as when it was a smaller, younger business. Gleasonıs steady growth has netted other benefits. While the company has few product groups, it has demonstrated resourcefulness in expanding diverse markets through strong customer emphasis and the successful development of various new products. The companyıs products are useful, ordinary, and categorized as being of low technology. Products are generally not subject to any severe changes in style or obsolescence. Hallmarks of the company have been its stability, steady growth and consistent profitability ... all well above industry averages. The year 1960 marked the first major acquisition in an ongoing program. Since then, Gleason has made fifteen additional acquisitions of various sizes. Gleasonıs personnel are committed to the conservative/conservator philosophy of its founder. Deliberately, the company has a smaller management staff, all being ³hands-on², and shorter lines of communication than are found in typical organizations of its size. Practicality is the watchword, simplicity is emphasized and bureaucracy avoided. Authority and responsibility are delegated with accountability. Success is recognized and rewarded.

MANUFACTURING CAPABILITIES Gleasonıs automated manufacturing capabilities include:

  • Metal Fabrication
  • Powder Coated Painting
  • Fabric Sewing
  • Assembly

Principal product groups include:

  • Tires (Semi-Pneumatic, Pneumatic, Industrial)
  • Wheels (Steel and Solid Rubber)
  • Casters
  • Material Handling Equipment
  • Hammocks & Steel Stands
  • Sports & Soft Sided Travel Bags
  • Advertising Specialty Products
  • Outdoor Home & Lawn Products
  • Commercial Landscaping & Nursery Products
Gleason continues to stand ready to acquire either compatible independent companies or divisions of larger entities. Although certain turn-around situations will be considered, Gleason prefers that future growth come from integrating into its existing operations a series of healthy companies with experienced and competent management. Gleason is actively seeking boldly conservative businesses and individuals with whom they can build and grow together. Gleason favors manufacturing operations having mature technology and low risk of obsolescence. Significant historical growth is not required. Companies can be fairly large (up to $200 million in sales volume) or small; can be public or privately held; can be purchased or merged. Gleason offers the utmost in flexibility of acquisition structure, and, if desired and deserving, real managerial autonomy. Additional managerial and capital support will be provided whenever needed. Inquiries and proposals should be submitted to the personal attention of the companyıs founder, A.L. Kotler. All inquiries will receive careful attention and a prompt, confidential response.
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