Purchase of Remington Steel could mean new jobs in Springfield

An Indiana steel firm has purchased Remington Steel in Springfield, a move that could eventually mean more jobs in Springfield, according to officials from both companies.

Westfield Steel, a family-owned firm based in suburban Indianapolis, recently closed on a deal to buy Remington Steel. No workers will be laid off, and the initial plan is to add between 10 to 20 jobs in Springfield over the next year as long as the economy cooperates, said Fritz Prine, president of Westfield Steel, Inc.

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Remington Steel has about 50 employees, said Prine, who declined to discuss the purchase price.

“It allows us to grow some capability that Remington had that we didn’t,” Prine said of the acquisition. “There’s very little overlap in machining capabilities and skill set. We’re going to benefit from their manufacturing equipment and parts making and they’re going to benefit from our truck fleet and sales and distribution network.”

While there are no guarantees, the goal is to add additional work in Springfield over time, Prine said.

“They currently only have one shift and we want to grow the company,” he said of Remington. “They have a good footprint and experienced operators. The economy has to cooperate but our goal is to start with a couple different departments on one shift and increase to two shifts.”

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Westfield Steel, which also operates a facility in Terre Haute, Ind., provides steel products to construction firms, as well as some manufactured products to firms in manufacturing. The company’s customers also include a smaller number of steel service centers and agricultural firms, for example. That company has about 120 employees.

Remington typically focuses more on manufacturing products, and provides services for customers like Navistar and Crown Equipment, said Robyn Koch-Schumaker, CEO of Remington Steel, Inc. The company provides parts for the military land vehicle market, including the MRAP vehicle.

The Springfield company was founded in 1986 by Harold Pollens and Roy Kohl, but became available for sale about three years ago after Kohl’s death, she said. The goal was to find a good buyer, but also ensure the company remained in Springfield, Koch-Schumaker said.

“These employees have worked here all these years and that’s a lot of families we impact,” she said. “They wanted to make sure that no one would be negatively impacted by the sale and we have such as skilled workforce. (Westfield) is pleased to get that knowledge.”

The deal, which has been in the works for about four months, will benefit workers in both states, she said. Koch-Schumakler, who also owns her own accounting practice, will remain with Remington during the transition but will step aside once the move is complete.

“They’re much more steel processing than we are and they’re larger so we’ll hopefully be able to get better steel prices and therefore help our customers,” Koch-Schumaker said. “We have so much more manufacturing technology than they have and they’ll be able to expand that to their current customer base as well as future ones, which will help us.”

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