ADVANCED MANUFACTURING: Demand fuels Kohler Power Systems’ success

With consumers and businesses relying more than ever on electricity, the market for generators has never been better. And Kohler Power Systems is developing unique, reliable products to meet the growing need. “We’ve seen increased global demand for backup power generators, and Super Storm Sandy, Hurricane Katrina and recent ice storms have created problems maintaining reliable power on an aging U.S. power grid,” said Vito Minneci, vice president of marketing for Kohler Power Systems. “Power failures are increasing in size and severity at the same time we rely on electricity to power computers and other electronic devices. It’s a major part of our daily lives.”

The increased demand for generators is powering growth at the Sheboygan County company, which broke ground last August on a 105,000-square-foot expansion at its plant in the Town of Mosel.

“The expansion will give us more capacity to manufacture our standard products and allow us to increase capability to manufacture large customized ‘turnkey’ solutions for customers,” Minneci said. “Kohler is unique in that we’re an end-to-end manufacturer. We make our own generator components like alternators, controls and switchgear, as well as assemble them.”

Kohler Power Systems also plans to hire about 300 employees at its facilities in Mosel, Kohler and Saukville during the next three years.

The company expects the biggest growth in the large generator market (1 megawatt to over 3 megawatts). Minneci said data centers and other essential businesses, such as hospitals, need reliable back-up electrical systems in place.

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