The Early Years
The company originated in
Expansion Into Education
The film business introduced Spectrum to the education market and also to Hubbard Scientific Company. Hubbard Scientific manufactured and sold educational products which were used in high school science curriculums. Recognizing the growth opportunities and synergies associated with combining the two companies, Spectrum acquired Hubbard Scientific in July 1975. The combination resulted in a doubling of the company’s size in 1975 and additional significant growth in 1976. By the end of 1976, the company had operations in three locations; the corporate office in Northbrook, Illinois, film processing in Carol Stream, Illinois and a new assembly and warehousing facility for education products in Chippewa Falls, WI.
Spectrum Manufacturing Is Born
The Manufacturing Division was launched in August 1983 to build upon the newly acquired metal fabrication capabilities. The Manufacturing Division operated in a small part of the Hubbard Scientific building in
The dawn of the 1990’s was also the dawn of a new era for Spectrum Industries, Inc. It was at this time that the company decided to consolidate its operations to concentrate on the manufacturing business. The corporate office was moved from
Vision Leads Spectrum in a New Direction
In 1991 Spectrum launched a brand new business model and product line geared around providing high quality computer laboratory furniture that accommodated the cabling associated with personal computers. The superior quality and functionality of the CLASS line of computer laboratory furniture along with a program of selling directly to K-12 educational institutions was very popular with the schools’ administrators and fledgling technology departments. Carried by the growth of the personal computer use in education, Spectrum Manufacturing grew at a steady pace throughout the decade. Manufacturing plant size grew by 100,000 square feet, revenues increased five-fold, employment increased and the company’s capabilities and innovative products expanded. The company also continued to provide exceptional service while growing its point of purchase display capabilities during the period.
As educational institutions transitioned to the laptop, computer laboratory furniture demand began to decrease at the start of the 21st century. Anticipating the ongoing technological changes, Spectrum has continually developed products which solved customer needs. The company has developed mobile carts to securely store and charge laptop computers, furniture for housing remote learning equipment, carts for turnkey teleconferencing, and lecterns to be used in multimedia presentations. Spectrum’s method of partnering with our customers and end-users to solve a customer’s need has resulted in over 10,000 partnerships and furniture installations throughout the United States along with many innovative product ideas.
Innovation Fuels Growth
To accommodate the growth fueled by our innovation and to prepare for future growth Spectrum expanded its Chippewa Falls facilities in December 2005. A 125,000 square-foot building was purchased to add capacity to the metal fabrication, powder-coating and to the assemble-to-order product lines. The fast growing high-tech laptop storage products, state-of-the-art lecterns and flat screen desks had outgrown the previous manufacturing facility and required additional capacity to keep pace with demand. Besides investing in a new building Spectrum also invested in new manufacturing equipment. A high-output laser significantly improved the capabilities and metal fabrication output as did a new high-tech powder coating line.
This facility is also home to Spectrum’s corporate office and its newest division, Applied Medical Solutions. The division was formed to enable Spectrum to offer the company’s products, services and innovative problem-solving abilities to the healthcare industry.
2009 and Beyond
The year 2009 marks the company’s 41 year anniversary. During those 41 years Spectrum has built upon its strengths and values to provide innovative and high-value products and services to customers in many diverse markets. Our commitment to our customers has never been stronger and we are excited about the years to come.