MINNEAPOLIS—Raymond P. ``Gus'' Hawkinson, Jr., president and third generation leader of the family-owned Hawkinson Companies Inc., said simply, ``My family wanted to sell.'' On May 18, Branick Industries of Fargo, N.D., purchased all of the shares of the Minneapolis-based firm—which includes the Paul E. Hawkinson Co. and Hawkinson Treading Inc.—for an undisclosed price. Duane Brasch, Branick's president and CEO, will assume the same titles for Hawkinson.
Hawkinson's manufacturing and sales operations are expected to remain in Minneapolis. Mr. Hawkinson will continue working in engineering and sales under a three-year contract.
``My grandfather (Paul E. Hawkinson) and Earl Branick were best of friends,'' Mr. Hawkinson said. The two companies have dealt with each other for many years, he noted, and Hawkinson had first approached Branick ``some time ago'' about a possible deal.
He said Hawkinson used a broker to administer the sale and several other companies were involved before the decision was made to sell to Branick.
``Price was always a consideration, but there were other things,'' Mr. Hawkinson said.
``This acquisition will complement our retread equipment product line and increase our position in the retread industry,'' Mr. Brasch said in a press release. He could not be reached for further comment, but a company spokesman said Branick and Hawkinson are ``a good fit.''
Hawkinson sells retread equipment and supplies and has about 60 franchised dealers for its mold-cure and pre-cure systems. It also markets the NDT-series of non-destructive tire testers—designed to electronically screen out casings unusable for retreading.
Branick is a supplier of undercar and tire service tools and manufactures retreading equipment and supplies such as curing rings and molds. The spokesman said Branick will ``continue to concentrate on retread equipment.''