Industry News | June 6, 2012

Vollrath Acquires Polar Ware Company, Stoelting

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Vollrath President and Chief Executive Officer, Paul Bartelt, announced the acquisition of Kiel, Wisconsin-based Polar Ware Company including the Stoelting operation.

Stoelting is a diverse manufacturer with three primary divisions: foodservice, cleaning, and process equipment. Polar Ware is also a varied, multi-industry manufacturer that predominantly serves the foodservice industry by providing a selection of smallwares, serving equipment, and components for OEM customers.

Stoelting’s Foodservice Division offers a broad and premium line of soft serve ice cream and frozen beverage dispensing equipment that supports a fast growing area in foodservice menu development. Stoelting supplies freezers to thousands of retail and foodservice companies, and is recognized as a leader in frozen treat technology.

The company’s full line of frozen treat equipment in countertop or floor models includes soft serve, custard, shake, batch freezers, and frozen beverage equipment including slush and carbonated slush offerings.

Stoelting’s Cleaning Equipment Division designs and manufactures a complete line of industrial parts cleaning equipment for general industrial and electronics assembly applications. The company’s Process Solutions Division designs and manufactures a full line of USDA approved cheese making equipment, with a long history of providing high quality cheese vats, curd tables, block formers, draining and matting conveyors, as well as salting belts.

Polar Ware has been providing foodservice products for industry professionals with an extensive selection of durable, high quality, deep drawn products for the foodservice and healthcare industries. The foodservice product line includes steam table pans, chafing dishes, stock pots, mixing bowls, serving trays, utensils, and a wide variety of other kitchen items.

In terms of operations, Polar Ware and Stoelting will remain separate entities under The Vollrath Company and continue to service their existing channels. Both companies will conduct business as usual for the foreseeable future.

“Combining with Polar Ware/Stoelting allows Vollrath to diversify and greatly expand our offering of equipment and smallwares and it further establishes Vollrath as a foodservice industry leader,” Bartelt says. “Also, we will continue to support Stoelting’s strong engineering and manufacturing capabilities, enabling the company to continue to service its customers in this growing segment of the foodservice market.”

Both Vollrath and Polar Ware can trace their roots back to 1874 when Jacob J. Vollrath opened his first enamelware plant in Sheboygan, Wisconsin. In 1907, Andrew Vollrath, Jacob’s son, left The Vollrath Company to establish the Polar Ware Company. “It is wonderful to see these two family-owned businesses come back together again after more than 100 years,” says Terry Kohler, current owner of Vollrath and great-great-grandson of Jacob Vollrath. “Together, we can create an even stronger company that is positioned for continued success. It also furthers both our family’s long-standing commitment to the well-being of the greater Sheboygan area community.”

“Four generations of Vollrath’s have been at the helm of the Polar Ware Company, and I feel very honored to be one of them,” says Walter Vollrath, the current Polar Ware owner and great-grandson of Andrew Vollrath. “I, my wife Mary Jo, and daughters Kate and Anna feel God has extremely blessed our family. We know that the reuniting of these companies, as well as the Kohler and Vollrath families will lead to the ongoing growth of our businesses, our employees and our community.”