Founded in 1964 in Gillette, WY by Leon Wandler with only 6 employees; today L&H Industrial has over 1,000 employees with locations on 4 continents worldwide. Now one of the big players in the mining industry, the beginnings of L&H were humble.
In the early days of “L&H Welding and Machine Company”, the original business name, Wandler repaired oil field equipment until the oil boom busted in the 1980’s. Shortly after the change in the local oil field industry, Wandler then focused on repairing equipment for local coal mines. In the 1990’s Wandler retired, passing the company to his sons, who had worked for their father since they were 14. Today Wandlers’ sons Mike Wandler, president, and Jeff Wandler, Vice president, along with Jim Clikeman, Chief Financial Officer continue to grow L&H Industrial on a global scale. Continuing the family legacy, Mike and Jeff’s nephews Jason Percifield and Dustin Roush are being involved and trained in the business as they became minority owners in 2009.
As L&H Industrial’s product offerings grew, so did the company’s manufacturing and service capabilities. Today L&H’s state of the art equipment includes an enhanced shovel lift system, capable of undecking a shovel in two shifts along with the company’s Hofler 6000 6-meter gear grinder, able to supply large gears, pinion shafts and pinions up to AGMA 12 quality. These growing capabilities also facilitated L&H to provide even better products. In the 2000’s the company began offering Omega Premium Parts for shovels, drills and draglines. Omega parts are manufactured with a unique value added design, created by the company’s skilled engineering department. The Omega products were created after years of listening to customers discouraged with OEM designs failing; the Omega line of products extend life, lower the overall cost of ownership and upgrade performance of mining equipment.
In 2001, L&H bought “Pro Parts” in Tucson, AZ, a decision that introduced L&H to the idea of exporting their mining parts. The company experienced great success in exporting their parts, and in 2011, after a year of engineering, design and manufacturing, L&H Industrial delivered its first 4100 Omega Boom to a customer in Chile. Weighing in at 80 tons, and valued at $1.4 million dollars, it is the company’s single largest manufactured part to date. Along, with the company’s growing exports, the company also continued to grow geographically and within the energy sector. Diversifying the company’s portfolio, the company opened locations in Mexico, Chile, and Australia, also partnering with Vulcan Industrial Engineering in 2009, located in Gujarat, India helped the company expand its global presence and triple manufacturing capabilities. Also expanding industries including iron, copper, molybdenum, nickel, gold and other resources; today L&H is in the process of opening L&H Canada to serve mining operations in the Canadian Oil Sands region.
As the company continues to grow its global presence, product and service offerings, and remain a leader in the ever-changing global market, a few things will not change for L&H Industrial. Long ago, the company made the decision to never compromise company values for unethical business despite an opportunity to do business in a new country. The company’s core values and safety are the forefront of their everyday business decisions; the business L&H gets is strictly based on merit, and the products and services they offer. The company focuses on building long-term working relationships with its customers. Along with being committed to ethical business and safety, L&H Industrial will continue to remain a family owned business, remaining dedicated to their employees and their customers.
Today L&H Industrial remains an innovator in the industry, and continues to bring new designs and solutions to their customers. Exciting projects and ventures L&H Industrial is currently working on include manufacturing over 1300 components, machining and assembling a Traction Roller Assembly for NASA on their Crawler Transporter #2. Additionally, in 2012 L&H Industrial and their partner Vulcan Industrial Engineering announced the launch of a new premier mining equipment company, “Velocity International”, which will provide the newest equipment enhancements and designs for the global mining industry. Likewise L&H is working to develop future machine prospects and specifications with both national and international partners.