Gleason celebrates 150 years

Hub of the gear industry.

The name Gleason is practically synonymous with gear manufacturing. Since the company was founded in 1865, the technology of gear manufacturing has been its focus, its core and its competitive advantage.

Staying true to that focus has been one of the keys to the company’s longevity, according to Chairman James S. Gleason. And he should know. Aside from the fact that his family name is still on the door, James S. Gleason has been with the company since 1959. “I was a so-called college trainee,” he says. “I started out in the foundry, doing pretty simple, fundamental, physical things. I systematically went through training with almost every part of the company.”

And through the years, he’s seen both the ups and the downs.

Founded in 1865 in Rochester, New York, USA, Gleason is a global leader in gear production technology, with manufacturing facilities and sales & service capabilities throughout the world. Today, Gleason has employees in 25 countries and sells to customers in more than 50 countries around the world.

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Born in Ireland in 1836, William Gleason believed that the post Civil War railroad expansion in the U.S. pointed to metalworking and machinery as keys to the future. Gleason started a one-room shop with a handful of employees in 1865 and by 1875 he acquired the Kidd Iron Works. This move, along with patents he received for several developments, allowed Gleason to focus on the business of gear machining processes. In 1874, Gleason invented the first bevel gear planer, modernising the gear-making process and spurring a new industry – bevel gears.

From the start, William Gleason recognised the growth opportunities represented by overseas markets. The first bevel gear cutting machine sold overseas went to Italy in 1877. His daughter, Kate, shared her father’s business vision for international markets, securing orders from England, Scotland, France and Germany during her first trip abroad in 1893.

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Said John J. Perrotti, President and Chief Executive Officer, “Gleason is proud to reach this historic milestone, and we celebrate the event with those who helped us achieve it – employees, customers, suppliers and the communities in which we live and work. Our longevity is a result of continuous innovation and a keen focus on our global customers. The vision and perseverance of past leaders and employees provided our foundation, which we are building upon to extend the Company’s leadership.”

To commemorate the milestone, Gleason will host a number of events throughout the year at various global sites, highlighted by a Gala Celebration Event which was held in June 2015 for employees, customers, suppliers and community representatives, and the Gear Solutions Forum, a major educational event for customers and other invited guests, displaying the latest in gear technology, in September. Both events taking place in Rochester, New York.

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The Gear Solutions Forum includes more than 40 demonstrations of gear processes, products and technologies, covering all major gear production processes and addressing a wide variety of industry needs. This event will be accompanied by two full days of international industry experts who will present their research in a wide range of gear-related subjects relevant to gear manufacturing, making the event the most comprehensive educational opportunity offered in the gear industry this year.

Additional events, festivities and customer recognition activities will take place throughout the year at Gleason operations and facilities throughout the world. More information on Gleason’s 150th Anniversary is available at http://www.gleason150.com

Gleason Corporation’s mission is to be The Total Gear Solutions Provider™ to its global customer base. Gleason is a leader in the development, manufacture and sale of gear production machinery and related equipment and automation solutions. The Company’s products are used by customers in automotive, truck, aircraft, agriculture, mining, energy, construction, power tool and marine industries and by a diverse set of customers serving various industrial equipment markets. Gleason has manufacturing operations in the United States, Germany, Switzerland, India, China and Japan, and has sales and service offices throughout North and South America, Europe and in the Asia-Pacific region.