Mergers & Acquisitions

Last updated on May 13th, 2019 at 02:43 pm

Hatco Corp. is now employee-owned

Milwaukee-based Hatco Corp. announced that as of May 9 the company is now 100 percent owned by the employees. This is a significant shift from the family ownership of Hatco that existed since it was founded in 1950. On October 5, 2004, the owner, David G. Hatch created an employee stock ownership plan (ESOP) for the employees and placed a portion of Hatco stock in the ESOP Trust for the benefit of their future retirement program.

“Making employee owners in Hatco is my way of recognizing the many great people who have made this company successful,” said Hatch. He also said that when the ESOP was ready to purchase the remaining stock he held, he would agree to the transaction. On May 9, Hatch sold the balance of his stock to the ESOP and that now makes Hatco 100 percent employee owned.

Hatch will remain on the board of directors and serve as chairman.

Hatco Corp. is a manufacturer of commercial foodservice equipment.


Kohler acquires Italian small engine manufacturer

Kohler Co.’s Global Power Group, a global leader in engines and power generator systems, has entered into an agreement to purchase Lombardini Srl from Mark IV Luxembourg S.A.R.L., a subsidiary of Mark IV Industries Inc.

Kohler Co.’s acquisition of Lombardini “will provide a strong complement to our existing Engine Business by adding a complete diesel engine line to serve the needs of our commercial and consumer customers worldwide,” said Dick Fotsch, president of the Global Power Group.

Kohler Co.’s engine division, in operation since the 1920s, manufactures air- and liquid-cooled, four-cycle gasoline engines. Kohler engines are supplied to equipment manufacturers worldwide in the lawn and garden, commercial and industrial, agricultural and construction markets.

The 85-year old Lombardini Srl, headquartered in Reggio Emilia, Italy, manufactures small diesel, gas, and petrol engines for the industrial, transportation, agriculture, marine and light construction industries.

“By being acquired by Kohler Co., Lombardini will become part of a group committed to growing the engine business globally,” said Gianni Borghi, chief executive officer of Lombardini Srl. “We’re confident that the combined engineering expertise and worldwide market support will serve our original equipment customers and end customers very well.”

The acquisition will also provide Kohler with an expanded geographical presence in the European and North African markets.

“Lombardini is a strong geographic complement to our engine business, and we’re pleased to add contemporary diesel technology to our product offering,” said Fotsch, adding that Lombardini’s advances in cleaner, quieter diesel engines were complementary to the Wisconsin company’s ongoing commitment to environmentally sound products.

The acquisition is expected to be completed in early summer 2007.

Mark IV Industries Inc. is headquartered in Amherst, N.Y.


Mason Wells spins off venture capital business

Milwaukee-based Mason Wells announced the spin off of its venture capital business into a new, fully independent firm called Broadwell Ventures.

“As an independent firm, Broadwell Ventures can build a network of relationships directly focused on the technical community and the commercialization of medical discoveries now under development in the Midwest,” said Dan Broderick, who is organizing the new firm and will serve as its executive managing director. Broderick is stepping down as managing director of Mason Wells Biomedical Fund I.

Broadwell Ventures will continue to implement the Mason Wells venture strategy, which focuses on biomedical investments throughout the Midwest, but particularly in Wisconsin.

In 2000, Mason Wells organized the venture capital business to fill a venture financing gap in the state. Nearly all of its $45 million Mason Wells Biomedical Fund I has been invested in Wisconsin companies – including two start-ups that were recruited to Milwaukee from surrounding Midwest states.

“To raise large amounts of venture capital – especially from institutional investors – a venture business needs its own identity,” said Mason Wells executive managing director John Byrnes.

Broderick joined Mason Wells after a 20-year career at the Mayo Clinic, where he was director of technology commercialization at Mayo Medical Ventures, the technology transfer and venture investment arm of Mayo Clinic.

Broderick also founded and serves as the president of the Midwest Healthcare Investors Network (MHIN), an organization whose membership includes more than 60 of the leading Midwest venture capital firms. In addition, Broderick serves on the board of directors of the National Venture Capital Association (NVCA) based in Washington, D.C.

Mason Wells will continue to manage the portfolio of Mason Wells Biomedical Fund I. No new investments will be made from Fund I, and the current investments will be managed to maturity. Trevor D’Souza, another managing director of Mason Wells Biomedical Fund I, will remain at Mason Wells to manage Biomedical Fund I investments and then will join the Mason Wells buyout team where he will focus on investments in the medical products and healthcare industry. 

Founded in 1982 as a subsidiary of Milwaukee-based Marshall & Ilsley Corp., Mason Wells became an independent firm in 1998.

Sign up for BizTimes Daily Alerts

Stay up-to-date on the people, companies and issues that impact business in Milwaukee and Southeast Wisconsin

No posts to display