Toro (company)

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The Toro Company
TypePublic company
NYSETTC
S&P 400 Component
IndustryIrrigation supplies,
landscape & turf maintenance products
Founded1914
HeadquartersBloomington, Minnesota, U.S.
Area served
Worldwide[1]
Key people
Richard Olson, Chairman, President and CEO
ProductsTurf and landscape maintenance, snow and ice management, underground utility construction, rental and specialty construction, and irrigation and outdoor lighting solutions
RevenueIncrease US$3.4 billion (2020)[2]
Number of employees
10,300 (full-time)[3]
Websitethetorocompany.com

The Toro Company is an American company based in the Minneapolis suburb of Bloomington, Minnesota that designs, manufactures, and markets lawn mowers, snow blowers, and irrigation system supplies for commercial and residential, agricultural, and public sector uses.

History[edit]

The company was established as the "Toro Motor Company" in 1914 to build tractor engines for The Bull Tractor Company.[4] In 1948, Toro entered the push mower market, acquiring Whirlwind Corp. They sold push mowers under this name for several years. In 1952, the Whirlwind's factory in Windom, Minnesota was closed.

In 1986 Toro acquired the Wheel Horse Products Division of American Motors Corporation (AMC).[5][6][7] Wheel Horse manufactured lawn and garden tractors as well as riding lawn mowers. The division was spun off from AMC for $8 million so that the automaker could maintain focus on vehicles.[8]

Lawn and garden tractors were then marketed under the Toro, Wheel Horse, and Toro Wheel Horse names. Acquisitions continued with the purchase of Lawn-Boy in 1989 from Outboard Marine Corporation.

In the 1990s, then CEO Kendrick Melrose changed the company's strategy, shifting its focus to golf courses, sports fields, municipal parks, and commercial properties. The company acquired James Hardie Irrigation in 1996, Exmark Manufacturing in 1997, Hayter in 2005, Rain Master Irrigation Systems, and Turf Guard Wireless Monitoring Technology in 2007.

In 2007 almost 70 percent of the company's sales came from professional markets, versus one-third in 1990. In 2007, the low-end lawn and garden tractor product manufacturing was outsourced to MTD Products, to be sold at Home Depot stores.[9] Toro discontinued its Wheel Horse models and retired the brand name in 2007.[10] Products and other brands expanded with Toro's purchases of TYCROP Manufacturing turf equipment product line in 2009 and USPraxis in 2010.

In 2014, the snowplow and snow removal equipment company Boss Products was purchased by Toro.[11]

On February 15, 2019, Toro announced that it has reached an agreement to acquire privately held The Charles Machine Works, the parent company of Ditch Witch and MTI Equipment and other brands, for $700 million.[12]

Brands[edit]

The company's products are marketed under several brands:[13]

  • Toro – irrigation systems & supplies, professional and consumer mowers, compact utility equipment, snow blowers, and handheld trimmers and leaf blowers[14]
  • Toro Ag – agriculture professional microirrigation systems, such as driplines, driptapes and sprayers for professional agriculture applications
  • Boss Snowplow – snow and ice removal
  • Dingo – compact heavy duty hydraulic equipment[15]
  • eXmark – commercial mowers[16]
  • Hayter (United Kingdom) – consumer and professional mowers.[17]
  • Irritrol Systems – irrigation systems for residential and commercial landscapes[18]
  • Lawn-Boy – consumer mowers[19]
  • Lawn Genie – consumer irrigation
  • Pope Products (Australia) – garden maintenance equipment[20]
  • Unique Lighting – low voltage landscape lighting[21]
  • Ventrac - tractors for maintenance and lawning

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Toro Co/The". bloomberg.com. Retrieved 16 January 2020.
  2. ^ "The Toro Company - 2020 Annual Report". thetorocompany.gsc-web.com.
  3. ^ "The Toro Company (TTC) Number of Employees". Yahoo! Finance. Retrieved 10 September 2015.
  4. ^ "The Toro Company History 1910-1919". Toro. Retrieved 10 September 2015.
  5. ^ "Steve Wolfe to Retire as CFO of The Toro Company". Business Wire (Press release). 30 March 2011. Retrieved 12 February 2017.
  6. ^ "Wheel Horse Lawn Tractor History". Tractor Data. Retrieved 12 February 2017.
  7. ^ "The Toro Company History 1980-1989". Toro. Retrieved 10 September 2015.
  8. ^ Foster, Patrick R. (2013). American Motors Corporation: the rise and fall of America's last independent automaker. Motorbooks. p. 182. ISBN 9780760344255.
  9. ^ "New Line of Toro Lawn and Garden Tractors to Debut at Toro Dealers and The Home Depot" (Press release). Toro. 5 January 2006. Retrieved 10 September 2015.
  10. ^ Gillespie, Evan. "Wheel Horse Tractor Information". homeguides.sfgate.com. Retrieved 16 January 2020.
  11. ^ "Boss Products to be Purchased by The Toro Company" (PDF) (Press release). Boss Products. 27 October 2014. Retrieved 10 September 2015.
  12. ^ "The Toro Company to Acquire The Charles Machine Works, Inc". www.businesswire.com (Press release). 15 February 2019. Retrieved 16 January 2020.
  13. ^ "The Toro Company - Our brands". Toro. Retrieved 20 March 2022.
  14. ^ "Toro Company".
  15. ^ Lambertson, Giles (1 June 2014). "Small Machines with Big Paybacks". Turf. Group C Media. Retrieved 9 December 2018.
  16. ^ "eXmark".
  17. ^ Hayter
  18. ^ "Irritrol".
  19. ^ "Lawn-Boy".
  20. ^ Toro Australia − Pope
  21. ^ "Unique Lighting".