Dan Ariens (L) and Harry Handkammer,
American-owned Ariens Company have purchased a majority shareholding of the Oxfordshire, United Kingdom-based ride-on mower manufacturer, Countax . The agreement was reached with Countax managing director, Harry Handkammer, who will remain as managing director of the company.
The family-operated Ariens Company currently sells lawn maintenance equipment and snow throwers under the Ariens brand across the European Community, Central Europe and the Nordic countries.
“We are committed to reinvigorating Countax and see opportunity for growth,” says Dan Ariens, Company President. “Countax will also give us a European base of operations from which we can grow other segments of our current business in that part of the world.”
Countax will continue to manufacture their range of ride-on mowers, both the Countax and Westwood brands. Countax employs 130 people in Oxfordshire and currently sells products in the UK, Germany, France and the Netherlands through independent equipment dealers. The company will also maintain distribution of the ECHO, Bear Cat and Shindaiwa brands in the UK.
Harry Handkammer told The Landscaper; “There is a strong synergy between the Countax and Ariens business, both are privately owned and enjoy common markets in landscaping and groundcare. I’m looking forward to working with Ariens, and expanding our operations both in the UK and across Europe.”
Established in 1933 in Brillion, Wis., Ariens Company is a leading manufacturer of outdoor power equipment for both consumer and commercial use. The company’s premium brands include Ariens Sno-Thro and Ariens zero-turn mowers for consumers; Gravely , EverRide and Great Dane commercial lawn equipment for professional landscape contractors; as well as Gravely Turf products, Parker debris handling equipment and Locke reel mowers for the sports field sector. Ariens’ affiliates, Stens Corporation and its Australian counterpart, Bynorm Group, supply replacement parts to the outdoor power equipment industry. Ariens Company employs more than 1,200 people, with operations in Wisconsin, Nebraska, Indiana, Alabama, and Australia. www.ariens.com