Unibond, formerly known as Uni-Bond Brake, LLC, is now a member of the Deshler Group family of companies. Learn more here and watch for their new website, arriving soon.
LIVONIA, Michigan – Dec 14, 2017 – Livonia-based Deshler Group, Inc., a global provider of integrated supply-chain solutions to Tier I automotive manufacturers, acquired Ferndale-based Uni-Bond Brake, LLC, manufacturing brake systems, including shoes, components, and hardware for heavy-duty and automotive applications. The acquisition was finalized December 1, 2017.
Deshler Group is made up of seven sister brands that offer a range of services including manufacturing, assembly, distribution, IT, warehousing and transport. Currently operating facilities in Michigan, Ohio and Costa Rica, the addition of Uni-Bond will establish Deshler Group’s first asset based in Oakland County, as well as diversifying the group’s aftermarket offerings and manufacturing capabilities.
In the near term, Uni-Bond will continue to operate with its current staff and management in place, and will align its operations with Amanda Products, Deshler Group’s aftermarket brand. Currently operating as a consumer-facing company offering Jeep and off-road accessories on the retail market, the addition of Uni-Bond will expand Amanda Products’ focus to include B-to-B aftermarket sales and services.
“We’re very confident that Uni-Bond’s decades-long record of success and reliability positions them as a perfect addition to Deshler Group, especially with their expertise in this area of automotive that usually falls outside the scope of companies that focus on the consumer auto market,” said Robert Gruschow, president of Deshler Group.
Based in Ferndale, Uni-Bond, LLC, has been serving aftermarket customers and OEM suppliers since 1952. The company’s product line includes light and heavy vehicle components and complete brake systems. Uni-bond’s on-site manufacturing capabilities include stamping, MIG welding and electric projection welding. The company was also among the first suppliers to achieve the QS-9000 OEM quality standard certification, and has been awarded the TS-16949 quality certification, established as the industry standard by global automakers.
“When we pursue any opportunities to diversify in the manufacturing space, it’s essential that we’re sure that the new assets will be a good fit for our integrated model, and that they’ll bring something new to the table,” added Gruschow.
“Heavy-use drum brakes serve a very specific market, but that market includes some of our most vital public needs, including transit, waste pickup, construction and heavy freight,” Gruschow said. “To integrate Uni-Bond’s operations with our comprehensive approach to delivering end-to-end solutions allows all of us to benefit from the increased reach and specialized knowledge that each partner provides.”
After a major strategy shift in 2009, Deshler Group has experienced continuous annual growth, and was named by Crain’s Detroit Business in 2017 as one of the top 50 Fastest Growing Businesses in Michigan. Following an extensive renovation of their flagship facility in Livonia, which houses primary operations for four of Deshler Group’s seven sister brands, Deshler Group acquired Livonia-based MSD Stamping in 2016, which joined Deshler’s existing Amanda Manufacturing brand. Deshler’s original Amanda Manufacturing asset in Logan, Ohio, has also undergone a multi-year expansion, almost doubling the size of the shop floor, and with new offices housing management, design and engineering operations to be completed in mid-2018.
Deshler Group’s continuing success, as profiled by Crain’s Detroit Business, was made possible by a series of innovative ideas and restructuring decisions. These changes, to not only reduce excess capacity, but also to approach the business in a new way, enabled the company to survive the recession and automotive crisis.
To hold steady while most suppliers’ sales were cut in half, Deshler Group first rapidly combined operations, and then added global freight and warehousing services. In 2010, Deshler co-founded GS3 Global, and then acquired GTM USA in 2011. These two new affiliates provided proven assembly, supply chain, manufacturing and freight forwarding capabilities to Deshler customers, and they frequently partnered to craft individualized customer solutions.
As this unique collaborative approach continued to accelerate Deshler’s growth, Robert Gruschow, Deshler’s president, “refocus(ed) all seven sister companies to operate as one organization.” This made them “a one-stop shop for customers that needed services that would encompass the entire supply chain.”
As the recession fades into memory, Deshler has continued to grow, through new and expanded business and acquisitions, all “fueled by re-branding and reorganizing its seven sister companies.”
Read the full Crain’s feature for more on the Deshler story.