Initially, finding its start as an agricultural product company, Midwest Industries eventually joined the marine industry. Recognized for its ShoreStation boat lifts and ShoreLand'r boat trailers, this year the Ida Grove, Iowa-headquartered company celebrates its 60th year in business.
Midwest Industries was founded by Byron Godbersen in 1954, who first achieved commercial success with his bolster hoist, an underbody wagon hoist used to tilt a grain box, emptying its contents. While the 1950s drew to a close, Godbersen's passion for boating only grew stronger.
Godbersen took his love of the water a step further by combining it with his inventive thought process. He eventually produced what would become the first ShoreStation Boat Lift. Debuting at the 1959 Minneapolis trade show, the lift was recognized for its innovation.
Godbersen later turned his passion to boat trailers, developing and patenting the first ShoreLand'r boat trailer in 1971. Since then, over 1.5 million boat trailers have been sold, helping users transport their vessels.
In 2012, Midwest Industries developed a new ShoreStation lift system, which was designed to speed up launch and lift times. "Fast, easy to use and maintenance free, ShoreStation's remote makes it so I can operate the lift as I enter the boat house without having to adjust the boat,' said Zane Schwenk, ShoreStation customer and pro wake boarder. "Since we use the boat often, the fast speed to launch and lift are really nice. The ShoreStation Lift is the best accessory to my boat in my 20-plus years as a pro wakeboarder.'
More recently, Midwest Industries has expanded its marine product offerings to dock systems, including its ShoreBridge and Classic models.
Throughout its 60 years, the company has grown to include a 340,000 square-foot, state-of-the-art manufacturing facility, distribution warehouse, convention center and private test lake. It employs over 300 people and its products are distributed throughout the US, Canada, Europe and Asia.
A video compilation of the Midwest's achievements over the past 60 years has been posted to YouTube.