Kracor acquired by Yamaha Motor Corp.

Milwaukee rotational molder joins global firm

Yamaha outboard motors on display at the Tallinn Boat Show in Estonia in March. (Photo: Nikolai Tsvetkov/

Milwaukee-based rotational molding manufacturer Kracor Inc. has been acquired by Cypress, California-based Yamaha Motor Corp., U.S.A., the U.S. division of Japanese corporation Yamaha Motor Co. Ltd. The transaction closed Monday for an undisclosed price.

Fuel tanks manufactured at Kracor.

Kracor, which was sold by George Kraemer, makes rotationally molded plastic products for a global client base in the recreational marine, industrial, agricultural, waste, lawn and garden and medical industries, among others.

“I am convinced Yamaha will take this business to the next level,” said Kraemer, who founded Kracor in 1969 and was president and chief executive officer. “I could think of no better way to assure Kracor’s continued growth than aligning with Yamaha.”

Kraemer, 82, now is a consultant to Yamaha. All of Kracor’s other 30-plus employees will be retained in the integration, he said.

“Yamaha took them all on. Every one. That was part of my requirements,” said Kraemer, who said Yamaha approached him about the sale. “The people that have been our managers within our compmany will remain in their same titles and positions.”

Steve Slicker is the acting plant manager. The existing operations will remain in place, and Yamaha will continue serving Kracor’s customers in all industries, Kraemer said.

Yamaha outboard motors on display at the Tallinn Boat Show in Estonia in March. (Photo: Nikolai Tsvetkov/

Yamaha, which makes motorcycles, outboard motors, ATVs, personal watercraft, snowmobiles and other products, formed a new subsidiary, Yamaha Marine Systems Co., to acquire the assets of Kracor. It will be part of the Yamaha Marine Group, a division of Yamaha Motor Corp., U.S.A., is based in Kennesaw, Georgia, and makes marine outboard motors for about 2,000 dealers and OEMs in the U.S., holding about one-third of the U.S. market share for marine outboards.

“The creation of YMSC and the acquisition of Kracor are part of Yamaha Marine’s long-term business strategy to expand into more integrated marine systems,” said Ben Speciale, president of Yamaha Marine Group. “YMSC will continue to add technologies and acquire assets and companies that support the marine systems strategy.”

Acquiring Kracor will expand Yamaha’s product offerings, the company said.

“The Kracor employees will help us supply rotational molded parts and integrated fuel tank systems to boat builder customers and Yamaha’s internal business units,” Speciale said. “We value their knowledge and skill.”

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Molly Dill, former BizTimes Milwaukee managing editor.

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