Thursday, March 26, 2015

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The History of Braun Industries, Inc.


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Founded in 1961 by Charles J. Braun, Braun Industries, Inc. was initially a pattern shop located in Lithopolis, Ohio. In the 1970s, the company identified the ever-growing need for a high quality, custom built product in the ambulance marketplace. Leveraging their existing technologies as a pattern shop, Braun set out to expand their product offering and began manufacturing handcrafted ambulances in 1972. The evolution was natural for Braun and from there the future direction of the company was decided.

As the emergency medical services industry learned about the quality of Braun's ambulance, demand grew and the company expanded. In 1976, they relocated operations to the community of Oakwood, Ohio and moved in to a larger facility to accommodate increased production. The new location served the growth of Braun's emergency vehicles and the company well for over twenty years.

In the 1980s and 1990s,  Braun Industries, Inc. continued to see success as an ambulance manufacturer and the business grew at a steady pace. Braun focused on expanding facilities and refining production processes to deliver the highest quality ambulance on the market. Computerized handling of all processes and streamlining of production methods paved the way to continued growth and efficient production of Braun's emergency vehicles.

In 1999, Braun Industries, Inc. transitioned to the second generation as Phil and Charma Braun assumed ownership and management of the corporation. With the goal of manufacturing the best ambulance in the country, they initiated a key investment strategy for the future. In May of 2000, Braun Industries, Inc. broke ground on a new, state-of-the-art facility. Located in Vision Industrial Park in Van Wert, Ohio, the 76,000 square foot manufacturing and corporate office facility was opened on January 2, 2001.

With new leadership, a state-of-the-art facility and increased customer demands, the future looked bright for Braun Industries. However, in a tragic turn on November 10, 2002, a tornado tore through the Vision Industrial Park. Extensive storm damage required the replacement of the entire roof and 80% of the exterior walls on the new building. As a testament to Braun's commitment to its customers, they were still able to complete and deliver vehicles that same week through community support and the strong dedication of their employees. 

As we rang in 2000, the new century brought new changes to Braun Industries. In 2006, the Van Wert facility was again expanded to include an additional 38,000 square feet of manufacturing space enhancing vehicle production capabilities.  In 2008, Braun transitioned to the third generation as Kim Braun and Scott Braun assumed leadership of the corporation. With this, Braun became one of the oldest family-owned manufacturers in the United States.

Under Kim and Scott’s leadership, Braun has flourished. In June 2014, the company purchased an existing facility adjacent to the Corporate Offices and Manufacturing Plant. Now part of the ever growing Braun Campus, the new Service Facility will allow Braun to develop their service center capabilities to include ambulance remounts and accident repairs. It also offers them room to grow, with the potential of housing future production capabilities.

Today, Braun Industries, Inc. continues to focus on what makes them great. The manufacturing process and operational flow are routinely evaluated for continuous improvement opportunities that can aid in the production of their emergency vehicles. The tradition of strong customer relationships, high quality products and valued innovations continue as they move forward. After three generations of delivering a high quality, custom handcrafted ambulance, you know a Braun ambulance is an ambulance  "Built for Life."  

Contact us to learn more about Braun Industries, Inc. today.

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1170 Production Drive
Van Wert, Ohio 45891
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