AriensCo has purchased Thomas Equipment from A-L Parts Inc. The acquisition will enable AriensCo to offer a new four-season product line under the Gravely brand to reach into the rental and construction markets.
Based in Beechwood, New Brunswick, Canada, Thomas Equipment is a manufacturer of outdoor equipment. Started in 1943 by the Thomas Brothers as an agricultural repair business, the company quickly expanded into manufacturing equipment for agricultural purposes, namely potato harvesting and handling. In 1969, Thomas Equipment introduced the world’s first hydrostatic drive skid-loader. Thomas Equipment was purchased by A-L Parts Inc. in 2013.
AriensCo is partnering with Al Downy and Leon Butterfield, owners of A-L Parts Inc., to launch the production of the Gravely branded Mini Skid Steer line in their Canadian facility.
“We think this is a perfect extension of our Gravely product line,” says Dan Ariens, chairman and CEO of AriensCo. “This multi-tool piece of equipment is great for hardscape work with accessories like a tree auger, stump grinder, pallet forks, etc. It’s a big tool but is small and compact so it can fit through a gate and can be hauled on a trailer with other mowers. We think it will be a great offering for commercial landscapers.”
AriensCo is providing management support for the production ramp.
“The AriensCo Team is professional, pleasant, easy and comfortable,” says Leon Butterfield. “We met with many other companies, but it just never felt right. When we spoke with Larry (Weyers, AriensCo president and COO) that first time, we hit it off immediately. There was just something about them, something driving the conversation that was far more genuine than we had experienced.”
Al Downy adds: “We knew right then, this company’s core values are what they embody and live by, not just words … and it’s been like that with everyone we have met and worked with throughout this entire process. Words cannot express how excited I am to get this going.”
Five Gravely-branded mini-skid loaders – three diesel and two gas-powered models – are planned for this fall, notes AriensCo.