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RB Scott opens facility in Minnesota

By |  November 5, 2021
John Mickelson, who began his career at RB Scott when he was 23 years old, is excited about the addition of the branch location in Clearwater, Minnesota. Photo: P&Q Staff

John Mickelson, who began his career at RB Scott when he was 23 years old, is excited about the addition of the branch location in Clearwater, Minnesota. Photo: P&Q Staff

John Mickelson envisioned opening an RB Scott Co. branch location for a number of years.

That vision finally became a reality this fall, when RB Scott opened a brand-new facility in Clearwater, Minnesota. The location strategically positions RB Scott, a dealer of process equipment and wear parts based in Eau Claire, Wisconsin, closer to customers in key markets.

“We’ve been doing business in Minnesota for 43 or 45 years,” says Mickelson, president and owner of RB Scott. “It’s been a long time. Customers have been very loyal. We just felt it was time to get here and be more a part of their business.”

Clearwater felt like the right place, Mickelson adds, because it is neatly situated between the Minneapolis-St. Paul metro area and markets such as Moorhead, Minnesota, and Fargo, North Dakota. And the timing was right for a couple of reasons.

“Partly because I’m getting toward retirement and I wanted to do this,” says Mickelson, who owns the business with his wife, Nancy. “Actually, we’ve talked about branches for some time. We really needed to finish out Eau Claire. Eau Claire was mostly built out, but we needed more warehouse storage and more office space. We did all of that and finished up in 2019.”

Celebration

Master Power Transmission is a newer RB Scott vendor partner. Photo: P&Q Staff

Master Power Transmission is a new RB Scott vendor partner. Photo: P&Q Staff

To commemorate the Clearwater facility, the company hosted a grand-opening event for vendors and customers.

RB Scott recently brought on a few new vendors whose equipment and wear parts are carried in Clearwater. Among those new vendors is Master Power Transmission, based in Columbus, Indiana.

“We’re pretty excited about that,” Mickelson says. “We had a lot of positive feedback about bringing gearboxes here, especially Master PT because of the premium nature of theirs.”

Robit is another new vendor to RB Scott, which is supplying the company’s drill steel and drill bits. Robit is based in Finland, where Metso – a longtime RB Scott partner – is headquartered.

RB Scott now represents Straight Line of Sanborn. Photo: P&Q Staff

RB Scott also now represents Straight Line of Sanborn. Photo: P&Q Staff

“One of my good friends at Metso who used to be head of crushing and screening [at Metso] called me one day and said: ‘How would you like to sell some drill bits,’” Mickelson says. “He’s now the CEO of Robit.”

Mickelson sees good opportunities ahead with Robit.

“All of the quarries, either through contract drillers or themselves, consume a lot of drill bits,” he says. “We’re excited to be part of the Robit team because it’s a premium worldwide brand. This is their specialty. It’s what they do, and we’re really starting to get some traction with that.”

Scheerer Bearing Corp., like Robit, is a newer vendor to RB Scott.

“It’s a family-owned business here in the United States making roller bearings and specialty bearings,” Mickelson says. “They make everything from little ones to the giant bearings that go on windmills. They’re a premium U.S. manufacturer of bearings, and we’re really excited to be their dealer in our territory.”

Additional partnerships

RB Scott offers Superior Industries conveyor components from its branch in Clearwater, Minnesota. Photo: P&Q Staff

RB Scott offers Superior Industries conveyor components from its branch in Clearwater, Minnesota. Photo: P&Q Staff

While continuing to offer conveyor components in Minnesota from Superior Industries, RB Scott also partnered with Straight Line of Sanborn, a family fabrication company building transfer conveyors, stacking conveyors, feed bins and other equipment.

Metso remains central to the RB Scott business, as well.

“Metso’s been our No. 1 brand for many years,” says Mickelson, referring specifically to Metso’s track-mounted crushers. “Their aftermarket parts and wear parts are a big part of our business.”

Argonics and Tema Isenmann are other long-term RB Scott partners.

“We have great long-term partners and then some new ones in the aftermarket,” Mickelson says. “Plus, we have our own brand with the crusher wear parts and with our belting.”

Outlook

Looking ahead, Mickelson is excited about the prospects for RB Scott in Clearwater and the company as a whole.

“I feel really good about it,” he says. “We’ll continue to be really selective in the people who work here. We have a great crew to build around. Trust is a big thing in this industry, and we work hard to both earn it with our customers and maintain it with our customers and vendors. It’s a three-legged stool: the customer, vendor and dealer. It’s managing all of that to make the triangle successful.”

Kevin Yanik

About the Author:

Kevin Yanik is the editor-in-chief of Pit & Quarry magazine. Yanik can be reached at 216-706-3724 or kyanik@northcoastmedia.net.

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