Flying high

Last updated on May 13th, 2019 at 02:33 pm

Emteq is the winner of the 2005 Waukesha Chamber of Commerce Top 10 Small Businesses of the Year Award. Emteq, a Muskego-based manufacturer and engineering firm that designs and installs components for the aerospace industry, will move to a new 57,000-square-foot facility in New Berlin on Nov. 1.
The new facility is currently under construction in the Towne Corporate Park, just north of Interstate 43 in New Berlin at 5345 S. Emmer Drive. Emteq will lease nearly half of the 125,000-square-foot building, with an option to lease additional space, said Jerry Jendusa, president and chief executive officer.
The company also is investing $800,000 to $1 million in improvements and custom upgrades to the building. The move will consolidate the company’s two current facilities that the company leases in Muskego’s industrial park and will nearly double its total square footage.
The larger plant reflects the company’s growth in the past several years, Jendusa said. In 2004, Emteq had 100 percent revenue growth to about $21.5 million and expanded its workforce by almost 70 percent to 125.
Emteq now has 145 full-time employees, and Jendusa said the company is expecting to hire 10 more by the end of the year.
Emteq executives are predicting revenues of $26 million to $30 million this year.
“If we reach our targets, we’ll be up to 155 (employees) by the end of 2005,” Jendusa said.
The company is hoping to double its size in the next seven to 10 years, Jendusa said.
The airline industry has struggled with high fuel prices, decreased travel since the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks and other issues. As a result, many of Emteq’s clients are reporting declining profit margins and reduced orders.
Nevertheless, Emteq has grown profits, market share and divisions by adding products and services that many of its clients no longer provide, Jendusa said. Some airlines and aircraft manufacturers have outsourced work such as engineering and certification to Emteq.
“Everybody’s problem is someone else’s opportunity,” he said. “We’re taking on functions that our clients used to do and creating value-added solutions. We keep expanding our products, services and the markets we serve to allow for growth to take place in a shrinking market.”
Emteq was founded in 1996, when Jendusa, Jim Harasha and Todd Lyda began making radio frequency cables for aircraft. The new cable bundles were easier to assemble and more durable than other products on the market at the time, Jendusa said.
Although Jendusa and his partners didn’t draw a salary in the first year the company did business, Emteq became profitable by 1997. That same year, the company began research and development to create light emitting diode (LED) systems for aircraft uses.
By early 2000, the company started selling LED lighting systems for aircraft. The systems are primarily used for interior lighting of aircraft, but Jendusa said the company is working to develop systems to light instruments in the cockpit and aircraft exteriors.
LED lights are superior to traditional fluorescent lights in aircraft, Jendusa said, because LED lights use less electricity, last longer and do not have problems with electrical interference.
In 2002, Emteq acquired an engineering firm in Miami, which has enabled the company to design and supervise the installation of its systems. The company’s engineers are also able to test and certify systems, allowing customers to outsource those activities, Jendusa said.
Emteq has evolved into a company with three branches: the wiring and cabling division, the LED light division; and the engineering division.
By keeping thee divisions separate to an extent, Jendusa said, the company has been able to accommodate growth while still focusing on quality and customer satisfaction.
“Last year, we expanded into installation, so we can now be a complete turnkey solution provider,” he said.
About 35 percent of the company’s contracts are with military aircraft manufacturers and support companies.
“The military has cut spending, but we’re still at war,” Jendusa said. “And besides that, there is a lot of standardizing and modernizing that needs to be done. And it’s not just in the U.S., but with other countries as well. We’d like to get heavily into that.”
Emteq is also working on creating and installing components for new aircraft coming off the production line.
The company is hoping to even out its clientele to about 33 percent each in military, commercial and corporate aircraft, Jendusa said.
Emteq’s employees have played a large part in the company’s growth and are crucial to its future success, Jendusa said.
“We try to encourage them to make mistakes and do things they never thought they could do,” he said. “They keep the customer in the forefront of their thoughts.”
The company has also been lucky, he said.
“We’ve been in the right place at the right time,” Jendusa said. “And we shake the dice a little bit.”
Location: S84 W18693 Enterprise Drive., Muskego
Year established: 1996
Main products/services: Wire and cable components, LED lights, engineering and certification for the aerospace industry
Number of employees: 145
Web Page:
June 24, 2005, Small Business Times, Milwaukee, WI

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