MARATHON — Lemke Industrial Machine, a designer and manufacturer of specialized equipment for locks, dams and movable bridges, has been acquired by Wisconsin River Partners effective Sept. 30, Lemke announced this week.   

Lemke was founded in 1973 in Marathon and focuses on critical infrastructure projects for such customers as the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, as well as public and privately held utilities.

WRP is a Wausau-based private investment firm focused on Wisconsin- based, niche manufacturers with proven successes in their markets. Their long-term strategy is to invest and grow their portfolio companies while staying committed to their central Wisconsin roots, according to Lemke. 

“When I began thinking about succession plans for the business, I wanted to make sure the new owners appreciated the people at Lemke who have made us successful and didn’t just buy the business to sell it off, move it or close it down,” said Dave Pflieger, Lemke’s former owner, in a news release. “That is why I chose Wisconsin River Partners, whose mission is to invest and grow manufacturing in Wisconsin. All of our people are staying with the new company and I will continue on as president.” 

Kevin Kraft

“We are very excited to complete our first acquisition in central Wisconsin,” said Kevin Kraft, managing director and co-founder at Wisconsin River Partners, in the news release. “WRP is proud to make Lemke our second acquisition and third total investment in Wisconsin-based companies. We believe Lemke can deliver on our mission of greater returns for investors and greater impact for the community.”      

Because Lemke Industrial Machine’s name remains unchanged and the management team and staff are remaining in place, no interruptions in service or production are expected.