June 1, 1999
Alto Buys Wap, Increases Market Presence Alto recently acquired Wap Reinigungssysteme GmbH & Co., a Germany-based manufacturer of vacuum cleaners, pressure

Alto Buys Wap, Increases Market Presence Alto recently acquired Wap Reinigungssysteme GmbH & Co., a Germany-based manufacturer of vacuum cleaners, pressure washers and industrial cleaning equipment. Terms were not disclosed.

Chesterfield, Mo.-based Alto, formed in 1998, encompasses 10 cleaning industry brands including KEW, Clarke, American-Lincoln and Simpson. The acquisition of Wap will give Alto sales of more than $363.7 million. It will make Alto the world's largest supplier of pressure washers, company officials said.

The acquisition also increases Alto's presence in Europe. "Wap has a strong position in markets where Alto previously had little influence, such as Germany, Austria and Switzerland," said Jan Berg, president and CEO of Alto's parent company, The Incentive Group.

Wap has one factory in Baden Wurttemberg and another in Bavaria.

Graco Acquires Pump Manufacturer Bollhoff Graco Acquires Bollhoff Verfahrenstechnik Graco, Minneapolis, has agreed to purchase the assets of fluid-application equipment manufacturer Bollhoff Verfahrenstechnik, Bielefeld, Germany. Terms were not disclosed.

The acquisition will allow Graco to grow its sales in Europe and in particular in Germany, said vice chairman George Aristides.

Both companies manufacture systems and equipment to move, measure, control, dispense and apply fluid materials. With 1998 sales of about $20 million, BV's principal products include piston and diaphragm pumps and two-component proportioning equipment.

The deal was expected to close May 31.

Deere Builds Virginia Utility Vehicle Plant John Deere's Worldwide Commercial & Consumer Equipment Division has allocated $30 million to build a 300,000-square-foot utility vehicle complex for its Gator line in southeast Virginia's James City County.

Expected to be complete by next summer, the plant will employ 300 and handle engineering and design for new products, as well as manufacturing, sales and marketing functions.

"The investment is a signal to our customers that John Deere is committed to the utility vehicle business and to extending our leadership posi-tion," said Mark Rostvold, John Deere senior vice president.

Multiquip Schedules Charity Benefit at ARA Show 2000 After opting not to hold its annual Comedy Night at the 1999 American Rental Association Convention in Las Vegas, Multiquip has announced that it will resume the charity benefit at next year's ARA show in Anaheim, Calif.

The event will benefit the Children of Hope, a charity that assists homeless women with children and establishes them back into the community and work force.

Comedy Night will be Monday, Feb. 14, 2000, at the Anaheim Hilton Hotel and Towers. Tickets are available for a minimum donation of $25 and can be purchased by calling Multiquip at 800/421-1244.

Buhler Purchases Progressive Manufacturing Buhler Industries, Winnipeg, Ontario, has acquired Progressive Manufacturing Ltd., a privately held Winnipeg-based company that specializes in metal stamping, pressing and coating.

According to Buhler, the acquisition complements its core business of manufacturing agricultural equipment, which is marketed to North America under the brand names Allied and Farm King. Progressive generates $2.5 million in annual sales, while Buhler has annual gross revenues of $89 million.