Family construction business lasts through several recessions

“When I was six years old, I went to work with my dad and just started cleaning up places he was building,” Wenrick said. “I started getting paid in junior high when I was about 14 or 15 years old.”

Wenrick joined his father and brother at Wenrick Construction, a company known in the area for building churches, but after his parents died, Wenrick and his brother separated and he started his own company, WENCO in his home in New Carlisle.

“I moved it from my home to the hog barn and then eventually to the current location here in New Carlisle,” Wenrick said.

Though the family was fairly well known in the business, Wenrick was still starting a new business in 1982, a time when high interest rates were putting the brakes on new construction projects.

Though Wenrick had to give up the church building for which the family had become known due to an agreement with his brother, he gradually built up his company and expanded by adding special projects.

“We added water projects and sewer plants and hospital work has been good to us also,” he said. “We’ve done a lot of remodeling and additions with the hospitals.”

During the recent recession, WENCO has survived by changing its business model several times and taking on unique projects such as the four-story Clark State Fire Training Tower in Springfield.

Other unique projects for the company included an 1850’s era building at Antioch College for which the company had to underpin and dig a basement and an eight story steel tower for Cemex in Fairborn.

WENCO employs 48 people and, according to Wenrick, 50 percent of the workforce has been with the company 15 years or longer.

“I tell my people in order for us to have a successful project and to be profitable, the customer not only has to be happy but they also need to tell someone about us,” Wenrick said. “Some of our past customers haven’t built again but they tell people about us. Word of mouth has been extremely important to our business. I think our biggest selling point is we work just as hard at saving people dollars as bidding cheap. We show them how we can save them dollars on a job and we kick the savings back to them.”

For more information on WENCO, log on to www.wencoinc.com or call Suzanne Winters at (937) 849-6002, extension 240.

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