April 1, 2016
The leaders of Ralston-based West Central Cooperative and Farmers Cooperative Co. in Ames inked a final merger agreement today, making the newly formed Landus Cooperative the seventh-largest grain company in North America.
“While today’s signing ceremony to formalize Landus Cooperative is historic for our employees, our communities and the greater cooperative industry, we are focused on what this merger means for our customers and members going forward,” said Milan Kucerak, the chief executive of Landus who formerly held the position with West Central. “Merging two strong cooperatives allows further diversification throughout the supply chain and opens local and global opportunities for added value and growth on behalf of our members.”
The new company has its headquarters in Ames.
The farmer members of West Central and Farmers Cooperative approved the merger in December with at least two-thirds of the vote, as required by law.
Landus now has a combined membership of 7,0000 and 725 full-time employees in 70 Iowa and Minnesota towns.
It is the seventh-largest grain company on this continent based on grain-storage capacity, according to World Grain magazine.
“We have been preparing for this integration date since the membership vote was announced,” Kucerak said. “While our customers and members will immediately begin to see our new logo on vehicles and at locations in addition to equipment and service sharing, complete integration of our accounting and operational systems is likely to take many months.
“We plan to make this transition as easy and streamlined for our customers and their operations as possible.”
West Central Cooperative had operated for more than 80 years before today’s merger.
Courtesy of Daily Times Herald, 4/1/16.