Founded in 1988, THECO Inc. has proudly been providing the upper Midwestern aggregate industry with materials processing equipment and top-tier service for several years. Now celebrating its 30th anniversary, the company is experiencing phenomenal growth due to its strong leadership and expert staff. Always looking for ways to help the customer, the business operates based on the number-one goal of complete customer satisfaction.
THECO Inc.’s expansive product portfolio includes crushing and screening equipment (used to reduce aggregate to usable sizes in a safe and efficient manner), as well as conveying and washing equipment. Its solutions for environmental recycling of many types of materials include construction and demolition waste and equipment for recycling secondary aggregates to make workable materials for parks, sports fields, or golf courses – all while reducing landfill waste. The company’s complete mining solution covers everything from crushing and screening to final washing, magnetic separation, and water treatment of even the most difficult minerals in the most extreme environmental conditions.
On top of equipment sales, THECO Inc. also offers service, replacement parts, and rentals of new and used equipment for the high-capacity aggregate production, environmental recycling, and mining sectors it serves. THECO Inc.’s customer base consists of aggregate producers such as mine and quarry owners, primarily focused on the road building, construction, demolition, and recycling sectors in the six states of Minnesota, Wisconsin, Iowa, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Nebraska.
At the beginning of 2018, THECO Inc. moved into a new headquarters in Big Lake, Minnesota which is 30,000 square feet and four times the size of the old headquarters. The new headquarters was built from the ground up as a full-service, one-stop shop for the industry’s best aggregate, materials processing and recycling equipment.
“We’re in our 30th year right now, and between what the business has been for the first 25 years and what it’s become in the last five years… it’s transformed drastically. We went from a small Powerscreen dealership, to moving into a new state-of-the-art facility and becoming a diversified dealership offering the full gamut,” says President Brian Dodd.
THECO Inc.’s new move was certainly necessary. Over the last few years, THECO Inc. has expanded its equipment portfolio to include many more manufacturers and brands, and it stocks a large variety of components and parts. The helpful dealership is continuously looking to diversify its product offerings in response to the increased demand from the Midwestern construction market.
“The addition of the lines we have taken on over the last couple of years has really changed our dealership,” says Dodd. “A customer who came to us five years ago would never have thought twice about renting or purchasing a loader or excavator from us. A telehandler, wash plant, or on the environmental side with our shredding and grinding equipment – these are all things that have really made us into who we are today. A customer calling us now potentially never would have called us three, four, or five years ago because we didn’t offer a lot of the products we offer today.”
As Dodd says of the growing company, which currently employs 15 people, “moving into a new facility has given us an increased capacity for inventory storage. It allows us to meet the demands of our customers and their servicing needs, along with maintaining one of the largest fleets of rental equipment in the aggregate industry for all of the Midwest.”
Noticing the company’s potential, Brian Dodd purchased THECO Inc. in 2014 and has been excited to see it grow.
“What made me want to purchase THECO Inc. was that I could see it was a very well-operated business,” he shares. “It was in a very large construction / aggregate industry, but only supplying the smallest niche of products – small and medium-sized screens. I looked at it as a huge opportunity to take the current customer base we had already proven ourselves to, and implement new products and new ideas.”
While aggregate is a niche sector, it is a critical part of the construction industry’s backbone; the materials that we use to construct our homes, offices, and institutions all come from the earth, and are extracted using the very high-quality equipment that THECO Inc. offers.
After the purchase, Mr. Dodd watched THECO Inc. grow from a small shop of material experts who knew a lot about processing material into the seller it is now. And it isn’t just the company that has grown, but the people who work at THECO Inc. Growing the business allowed THECO Inc.’s experienced staff to broaden their horizons and expand their capacities in a way that highlights their unique skills.
The experienced staff and the customer-oriented service provided is what sets THECO Inc. apart in the aggregate equipment market. “We treat every customer as if we were a part of their company. Even though we are working with extremely big equipment, we still try and give the same care, attention, and service to everyone, from the largest company to the smallest,” says Dodd.
The role of THECO Inc.’s staff is closer to that of a consultant, rather than a service tech or salesperson, as they listen to their customers in order to determine the best equipment for their needs. This is particularly important considering the challenging conditions that some of those in the industry, such as miners, may work in. The knowledge in operating machinery that THECO Inc. employees possess is what makes it possible for the business to offer machines that can operate in desert or arctic conditions – and tell you everything you need to know about them. THECO Inc.’s dedicated aggregate experts are always willing to answer the hard questions related to processing new material, and are ready to help as customers look through THECO Inc.’s range of equipment.
“As far as setting up equipment, we give a lot away. We have a lot of industry knowledge, and we are more than willing to share and educate people on how to do projects, not necessarily just for renting or selling the equipment,” says Dodd. “We are aggregate specialists. While some dealers may have a few specialists, all of our people are aggregate specialists, with years and years of experience.”
As THECO Inc. continues its growth, the prospect of bringing on new team members is anticipated. The business is open to hiring those who share its customer-focused values. When hiring new people, THECO Inc. ensures they receive an abundance of training to make sure they can service customers well and comfortably answer any question that may arise. “I want people who are willing to go the extra mile for the customer, who will treat the customer and the company as if it was their own,” says Dodd.
What THECO Inc. has in store for its future is steady and stable growth. While business may be booming for the industrial dealership, THECO Inc. has still kept its tight-knit, family feel as it branches out. Dodd wants customers to be able to feel reliant on THECO Inc. for other types of machines needed for other projects, whereas in the past they may have only called the business for one small project.
“One of the biggest things we are looking at is continuing to grow our service and parts offerings. I want people to call us and know that we will be there to help them because we have qualified individuals who can serve all their needs and work on anything they might have,” he concludes.
Any materials processor in the Midwestern region who calls THECO Inc. can rest assured that its team of industry experts is always ready and willing to help.