Tommy Gate Company recently purchased a 40-percent equity stake in Anteo S.P.A., a liftgate manufacturer located in Molinella, Italy.
Specific terms of the deal were not disclosed but ownership of Tommy Gate remains unchanged, the company said, and the management teams for Tommy Gate and Anteo will remain in place.
Anteo, a well-known manufacturer of liftgates, or tail lifts, was founded in 1969 and today has successful distribution around the world. Ilmer Maietti, Anteo’s general manager, will continue to manage the day-to-day operations of the company and retain his 60-percent ownership stake.
“Anteo is one of the few truly global liftgate companies,” said T.J. Blandford, CEO of Tommy Gate. “Ilmer and his team have, over the years, built a company that is admired and respected everywhere, and we are thrilled about the potential of this relationship.”
Known for premium, lightweight, aluminum designs, Anteo’s appeal in the steel-loving United States has been limited, but Blandford and Maietti recognize times are changing.
“In the last five or ten years, fleets and vehicle owners in the US have begun to place a greater emphasis on efficiency, weight and total cost of ownership. The time is right for an American partner who recognizes the opportunity with our products,” Maietti said.
Both companies expect long-term benefits from the relationship.
“My first impression upon visiting Molinella and the Anteo factory was how much it felt like Iowa,’” said Lila Blandford, president of Tommy Gate and daughter of Bus Brown, the company’s founder.
“It was immediately obvious to us that culturally this would be a really good fit. These two teams, with their skills, experiences, and shared values, have the potential to create something special that will last a very long time.”