Southworth-Milton Acquires Syracuse Supply, Expands Territory

Mon January 05, 2004 - National Edition

On Jan. 1, 2004, the acquisition of Syracuse Supply has expanded Southworth-Milton’s sales territory into upstate New York.

The acquisition will enable Southworth-Milton to bring its financial strength and flexibility in matters of financing of sales and rentals, its short-term rental business, and more than six decades of experience and product support to the current customers of Syracuse Supply.

Chris Milton, president of Southworth-Milton, said, “The strengths that the two companies bring to the table will allow us to improve business to all parties. This is a good match, and we look forward to a seamless transition. Southworth-Milton is experienced in the same weather, building seasons, industry needs, demands and construction challenges that are dealt with everyday in upstate New York.

“We will be able to add improved services to the New York market. They’ll have access to a larger inventory of new products and used machines from around the world, more rentals, enhanced customer services and processes, and more flexible and creative acquisition programs. Plus the facilities in Syracuse Supply’s territory will be upgraded at some point in the future,” he said.

The acquisition of Syracuse Supply also erases a timeworn, yet invisible, geographic line — one that started in Albany and traveled south nearly the length of the state, to the border of Sullivan, Ulster and Dutchess counties. That line would be the line of sales territory, where Syracuse Supply provided and serviced Cat equipment West of the line, and Southworth-Milton handled all customers East of it.

The acquisition will allow both teams to work together and find new ways to best meet the needs of all the customers they service — from a one-man landscaper operation to large road builders — and everything in between.

According to Gib Gagnon, general sales manager of Southworth-Milton’s New York territory, “Southworth-Milton has been an active member of the business and construction communities and organizations here in New York for many years. The Central and Western sales territory once serviced by Syracuse Supply is new sales territory, yes … but not unfamiliar territory.”

As of Jan. 1, the history of Southworth-Milton will add another chapter to a story that includes a start during the Great Depression; the contribution to the building of the factories, facilities, and infrastructures behind the World War II war effort and its aftermath; and the subsequent national expansion of roads, plants, airbases, shipyards, sewers, water lines and other utilities.

In more than 60 years the company has passed through three generations of the Milton family. Today Jack Milton, 75, chairman, is semi-retired but still goes to the office each day, as an advisor. Chris Milton, his son, is the current president. Chris was instrumental in the deal that will expand the company to the shores of the Great Lakes, where undoubtedly its next great chapter will be written.

For more information, call 508/634-5585.