Remmele Engineering was born in 1949 in Saint Paul, Minnesota as the Fred L. Remmele Company. The company’s founder, Fred L. Remmele, was born in Germany, but immigrated to the United States in 1926 to ply his trade as a skilled tool and die maker. Through the following years, Fred worked for tool and die shops in the Twin Cities of Minnesota as well as Chicago. However, he often found these employers could be doing better with their employees; good ideas and innovations weren’t sought and were often ignored. Seeing an opportunity for a better business model, Mr. Remmele founded the Fred L. Remmele Company along with Thomas Zastrow, another talented machinist. Remmele’s industry connections and reputation lead to an influx of work, some of which involves producing curved printing plates or machining projects. In September 1950, the company is renamed Remmele Engineering, Inc. (REI).
Throughout the 1950s and 1960s, REI grew rapidly. New business was coming from manufacturing heavy dies, jigs and fixtures. To keep up with the new demand, Remmele frequently buys new machinery and eventually buys a new facility on Pierce Butler Route in Saint Paul. However, the company continues to see a need for more skilled machinists than can be found in the marketplace. In 1965, REI initiates its apprenticeship program to train new employees for the highly specialized work that the company is now known for.
In 1971, Fred Remmele retired as president of REI, leaving behind a company that had become a machining leader in the Midwest. Ronald Pfleider is elected the new president of REI. The company continues to grow, acquiring land in Big Lake, Minnesota that would eventually be home to two new plants. REI also acquires two other companies, Raleigh-Jorgensen Industries and Great Northern Grinding, which enable it to reach into precision machining and precision grinding.
By the end of the 1970s, Remmele had continued to grow under the leadership of its new president, William Saul. The company opened the Remmele Training Center in 1974, which combined a private vocational school with precision machining job shop for practical experience. The consistent growth that the company undergoes leads to a need for a night shift, addition to facilities, and workforce growth. The growth was powered by Remmele’s transition to new markets such as building components for plastics, food packaging, and automotive industrial equipment.
In the 1980s, Remmele continues to take steps to secure its future. The company initiates a “Pride in Quality” program, which includes soliciting employee interaction through various means, including Action Cards. REI also works to install state-of-the-art computer equipment for scheduling, intra-plant communication, and engineering design. In 1981, Remmele establishes what will become the Automation Department, which handles design and manufacturing for custom machines and assemblies. Remmele also begins to find and work with new customers that will later become core clients, including customers in defense and energy.
In the spring of 2007, a new era began at Remmele Engineering. After 58 years of ownership, the Remmele family sold the company to Goldner Hawn, an investments company based locally in the Twin Cities. Staff throughout Remmele continues to stay in touch with members of the family and rely on their support as they move forward with positioning the company for a bright future.
In 2008, Remmele saw a couple of changes. First, Remmele purchased El-Tronic Precision, Inc. of Coon Rapids, Minnesota, a contract manufacturer of precision medical device components. With the purchase, El-Tronic became a part of Remmele’s Medical Device business unit, expanding its customer base and capacity. Second, in the summer of 2008, Remmele sold its former Automation Division, which became known as Aspect Automation.
In early 2012, RTI International Metals, Inc. entered into a stock purchase agreement under which it will acquire Remmele Engineering, Inc. The transaction is expected to close before the end of March, 2012.
At present, Remmele Engineering, Inc. is a dynamic, financially secure company with major customers in the aerospace, defense, and medical device industries. The company employs more than 525 people in the Twin Cities area and offers both engineering and manufacturing services. The company continues to pride itself on the precedent set forth by Fred L. Remmele decades before, which is a total commitment to quality, innovation, and customer service. Remmele Engineering intends to serve its customers and be a part of the community for decades to come.