Weber-Stephen Products

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Weber-Stephen Products LLC
Type Private
Industry Manufacturing
Founded May 8, 1893
Founder(s) George A. Stephen
Headquarters Palatine, Illinois
Products Outdoor grills
Website http://www.weber.com/

The Weber-Stephen Products LLC is a privately held American manufacturer of charcoal and gas grills, grilling accessories and other outdoor room products, primarily under the Weber name. In 2004, Weber-Stephen acquired competitor Ducane, which markets high-end gas grills.[1] It also operates four restaurants located in Illinois and Indianapolis, and publishes grilling-related recipe and cook books. The company was family owned, but sold a majority stake to BDT Capital Partners in 2010.[2]

Weber-Stephen sells its products in 30 countries throughout the world (Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, India, Italy, Mexico, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Russia, Slovak Republic, Slovenia, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, United Kingdom, United States) [3]

History[edit]

Replica of the original 1951 Weber kettle grill

Weber-Stephens was incorporated on May 8, 1893 as Weber Bros. Metal Works.[4]


The original round kettle grill was built by George Stephen Sr., a part-owner of a sheet metal shop in Chicago who sought to improve on the brazier he had been using to cook with at home.[5] The grill was produced using two sheet metal half-spheres normally used as parts of buoys built in his shop. George's neighbors called it ‘Sputnik‘.[6] Shortly thereafter he began selling the invention, which he called 'George's Barbecue Kettle', for which there was considerable demand.[7]

Because the grill became so successful after he began selling it in 1952, Stephen formed the barbecue division of the Weber Brothers factory. In the late 1950s, Stephen bought out the Weber Brothers factory and became the sole owner, devoting all his professional time to manufacturing and selling the Weber kettle. Soon thereafter, Stephen changed the company’s name to Weber-Stephen Products Co.[8]

In March 2004, Weber-Stephen acquired competitor Ducane, moving the company into high-end propane and natural gas grills.[1] At the time, Weber stated that it would continue to manufacture Ducane gas barbecue grills at the Barnwell, South Carolina facility. However, Weber outsourced production of Ducane models to China, along with its eponymous grills.




Current operations[edit]

Weber Grill Restaurant in Chicago, Illinois
Weber Grill Restaurant in Schaumburg, Illinois

Restaurants[edit]

In 1989, the company opened the first Weber Grill Restaurant in Wheeling, Illinois. Later, four more locations were built in Lombard, Illinois (1999), downtown Chicago (2002), Schaumburg, Illinois (2005), and Indianapolis (2007).[9]

The meats and other items at the restaurant are cooked with charcoal on custom-made stainless steel Weber grills. The kitchens are oriented in an open format so that customers can see meals being prepared.[10] The menus feature steaks, hamburgers and regional barbecue, along with grill-fired pizzas.[11]

Ducane[edit]

Ducane markets gas grills through big box home improvement and specialty outdoor product stores. In 2007, Ducane introduced the Affinity Series, which was part of the largest launch in Weber-Stephen's history.[12]

Ducane history[edit]

The Ducane Products company started out as Ducane Brothers Metal Fabricating in 1946. It moved three years later to Little Ferry, New Jersey, where made warm air furnaces. In 1968, the name was changed to the Ducane Company and moved the base of operations to Barnwell, SC. In 1975, they started making Ducane Gas Grills.[13] However, Ducane filed for bankruptcy in 2003 and was acquired by Weber-Stephens in 2004 for $13.6 million.

Publications[edit]

  • Weber's Art of the Grill: Recipes for Outdoor Living, Jamie Purviance and Tim Turner, ISBN 978-0-8118-2419-4, 1999.
  • Weber's Big Book of Grilling, Jamie Purviance, Sandra S. McRae, and Tim Turner, ISBN 978-0-8118-3197-0, 2001.
  • Weber's Art of the Grill Deck: Recipes for Outdoor Living (cards), Jamie Purviance and Tim Turner, ISBN 978-0-8118-3336-3, 2002
  • Weber's Real Grilling, Jamie Purviance, Mike Kempster, and Tim Turner, ISBN 978-0-376-02046-8, 2005.
  • Weber's Charcoal Grilling: The Art of Cooking With Live Fire, Jamie Purviance and Tim Turner, ISBN 978-0-376-02047-5, 2007.
  • Weber's Way to Grill: The Step-by-Step Guide to Expert Grilling, Jamie Purviance, ISBN 978-0-376-02059-8, 2009.
  • Weber's Complete Barbecue Book: Step-by-step Advice and Over 150 Delicious Barbecue Recipes, Jamie Purviance, ISBN 978-0600621119, 2010.
  • Weber's On the Grill: Chicken & Sides: Over 100 Fresh, Great Tasting Recipes, Jamie Purviance, ISBN 978-0376020352, 2010.
  • Weber's On the Grill: Steak & Sides: Over 100 Fresh, Great Tasting Recipes, Jamie Purviance, ISBN 978-0376020338, 2010.
  • Weber's Time to Grill: Get In. Get Out. Get Grilling., Jamie Purviance, ISBN 978-0376020604, 2011.
  • Weber's Smoke: A Guide to Smoke Cooking for Everyone and Any Grill, Jamie Purviance, ISBN 978-0376020673, 2012.
  • Weber's Barbecue Anytime: Over 190 Inspirational Recipes to Help You Get the Most Out of Your Barbecue, Jamie Purviance, ISBN 978-0600624134, 2012.
  • Weber's New Real Grilling: The ultimate cookbook for every backyard griller, Jamie Purviance, ISBN 978-0376027986, 2013.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Weber-Stephen Products Co. Acquires Ducane(R) Gas Grills. Accessed June 15, 2013
  2. ^ Weber-Stephen Products LLC Acquires Ducane Gas Grills, Inc. Accessed June 15, 2013
  3. ^ Weber-Stephen Products Co. - Overview Accessed 2007-07-02
  4. ^ Corporate Fact Sheet Accessed June 15, 2013
  5. ^ "Keepers of the Flame". Saveur (117): 68. 2009. 
  6. ^ "Weber - A food love story". Archived from the original on 2007-09-28. Retrieved 2007-07-02. 
  7. ^ "Weber Newsroom - Company History". Archived from the original on 2007-06-08. Retrieved 2007-07-02. 
  8. ^ "George Stephen, Company Founder and Inventor of the Weber Kettle Grill". Archived from the original on 2007-06-23. Retrieved 2007-07-02. 
  9. ^ "Weber-Stephen Product Co. Corporate Fact Sheet". Archived from the original on 2007-11-07. Retrieved 2008-03-31. 
  10. ^ FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS Accessed June 15, 2013
  11. ^ Weber Grill Restaurant Menu Accessed June 15, 2013
  12. ^ Weber-Stephen Products Co. Introduces Its New 2007 Ducane Gas Grill Line Up March 12, 2007. Accessed June 15, 2013
  13. ^ Ducane Gas Barbeque Grill Parts and BBQ Manufacturing History Accessed June 15, 2013

External links[edit]