Our company has been built through a series of acquisitions. It is not surprising then that the roots of our family tree travel in many directions.
In 1935, the Boston Woven Hose & Rubber Company of Pittsburgh was founded by Ben Gooding, Sr. The company would later establish a Chicago service center and by the early 1950s change its name to Gooding Rubber Company.
By 1982, however, the Pittsburgh and Chicago service centers had split. The Pittsburgh based Gooding Rubber Company at that time was made up of two locations, Pittsburgh and Beckley, WV and was dedicated to serving the steel and coal industries of the region. It was at that time that Ben Gooding, Jr. sold the Pittsburgh Company to Andy Lewis and Dave Goetz.
Starting to Acquire
In an attempt to diversify geographies and industrial markets, the company embarked on a series of acquisitions starting in 1985 with the purchase of the Richmond Rubber Company. By the time the company changed its name to Lewis-Goetz, the consolidation of the North American industrial rubber distribution market was well underway.
By 1992, the company had grown into one of Industrial Distribution’s Top 50 companies and by 2002 had completed 10 acquisitions and had 20 locations from Chicago, east to Philadelphia and south to Florida.
Meanwhile, as Ben Gooding, Sr. was establishing his fledgling rubber distribution company in Pittsburgh, Goodall Rubber Company, having begun operations in 1870, had already been in business for 65 years and was well on its way to establishing itself as one of the most important manufacturers and distributors of industrial rubber products in the 20th Century.
By the early part of the 21st Century, however, Goodall had changed. It had largely divested or closed its manufacturing operations and, despite significant acquisitions in Canada, had just concluded a significant series of distribution facility rationalizations in the U.S.
Goodall’s parent company, Trelleborg of Sweden, wanting to focus its energy and resources on building its global manufacturing base, decided to seek strategic buyers for this North American distribution business. In May, 2006, the acquisition of the assets of Goodall Rubber Company was completed and the largest North American industrial rubber distribution business had grown to more than 50 locations throughout North America.
Subsequently, in 2007, Lewis-Goetz bought Samson Industrial, a company built through the consolidation of many former Rubber and Gasket Company operations whose individual histories and stories are as varied as the industry itself.
In 2008, Lewis-Goetz purchased RBH/Mill & Elevator Supply, Inc. and RBH/Industrial, Inc. a provider of industrial supplies to the agricultural and industrial markets of the Midwest. This acquisition provided Lewis-Goetz access to growing agricultural markets in Kansas, Nebraska and Iowa as well as product line expansion.
Lewis-Goetz acquired both the EVCO House of Hose and Industrial Supply & Rubber of Decatur, Alabama in 2010. EVCO House of Hose was a Salt Lake City, UT based distributor of hose, fittings and related products. This acquisition helped fill a geographic hole in the company’s footprint while providing synergy from an end-market standpoint. Industrial Rubber & Supply of Decatur, AL was a distributor of gaskets, seals and hose assemblies specializing in the fabrication and supply of these products to a variety of industrial customers in the northern Alabama market. These two acquisitions filled Lewis-Goetz’s geographic needs and provided management teams that made both companies great acquisitions for Lewis-Goetz.
2011 was a big year – not only did Lewis-Goetz re-brand themselves to take on a more industrial company look and feel, but they also acquired Valley Rubber and Gasket, a Sacramento-based fabricating distributor of conveyor belting, hose and sealing products. Valley Rubber and Gasket had operations throughout central and northern California as well as locations in Seattle, Washington; Elko, Nevada; and Salt Lake City, Utah. This acquisition allowed Lewis-Goetz to expand their footprint even more in the western part of the country while also acquiring a company that provides mission-critical products to the construction, agriculture, mining and food processing markets in addition to numerous other diverse end markets of the Western US.
Also in 2011, Lewis-Goetz was acquired by ERIKS, a Netherlands-based industrial service provider of a variety of industrial products, including fabricated hose, cut gaskets and sealing products. This move helped to make Lewis-Goetz an important part of a leading global service provider and will aid in expanding into US and international markets. To top off the year, Lewis-Goetz was also named one of the largest industrial distributors in North America, ranking 23rd in Modern Distribution Management’s list of top Industrial Distributors.
Coming Together with Renewed Focus
In 2014, the ERIKS North America board was formed. This board will oversee the five ERIKS owned companies in North America; ERIKS Seals and Plastics, Rawson, Industrial Controls, The Newdell Group, and Lewis-Goetz.
In the summer of 2014, the Goodall distribution network in Canada changed its name to ERIKS. This change enabled us to retain the name Goodall® as an international hose brand while aligning our distribution side with our parent company. The goal of this brand separation was to provide market clarity and eliminate the restrictions of competing as a single distribution and product brand.
On July 7, 2014 Lewis-Goetz acquired Advanced Sealing which is a full-spectrum manufacturer and distributor of fluid sealing products to refining, chemical processing, power generation and waste water treatment facilities. A premier sealing house to customers looking for new solutions to age old problems, Advanced Sealing has a special focus on fugitive emissions products, proven to meet and exceed today’s demanding LDAR sealing standards. Advanced Sealing was incorporated in 1988 and has US based facilities located in Cerritos, California and Pascagoula, Mississippi. The acquisition of Advanced Sealing provides high quality products and a professional, customer focused workforce, further strengthening the solutions-based approach of Lewis-Goetz.
In early April 2015, Lewis-Goetz increased its footprint in the Southeast region of the U.S. by acquiring Action Industrial Group. Action Industrial Group is a South Carolina-based fabricator and distributor specializing in fasteners, gaskets, hose products and industrial construction tools and supplies.
Today, we continue to look for ways to consolidate what remains a very fragmented industry. The company’s size and scale has afforded us the resources to invest in people, quality processes and systems. This ensures that we can provide consistent, reliable, high quality products and services to North American industry, whether to support a single local customer or the largest multinational corporations with facilities throughout the world.