Agustin Ramirez Inducted into the AEM Hall of Fame
For over 30 years, Agustin “Gus” Ramirez has been making an impact in the mobile hydraulic control landscape and this year the Association of Equipment Manufacturers (AEM) has selected Gus for inclusion into the elite club of individuals who have positively shaped today’s off-highway equipment industry.
Started in 1993 as an independent organization by Construction Equipment magazine, the Hall of Fame has continued under the guidance of one of its original board members, the AEM. The Hall of Fame recognizes individuals who have blazed a trail of innovation and industriousness that have had impact on the off-road equipment industry. AEM also works to grow public understanding and appreciation for the role that these companies and products have in creating the world that we live in, as well as creating jobs throughout the world and especially in Wisconsin where Caterpillar, Joy Global, Manitowoc, Deere, Oshkosh and other manufactures have major facilities.
In 1985 Ramirez, then division general manager, lead a leveraged buyout that eventually became HUSCO International. From that point on, through intelligent risk taking, sound judgment and business savvy, Gus was able to grow the firm from $13 million in sales in 1983 to sales revenue of nearly $400 million in 2014. HUSCO’s growth was driven by product innovation, new market penetration and global expansion that has seen HUSCO grow from a single location in 1983 to a truly global company with sizable manufacturing and engineering facilities in the USA(3), the UK, China, and India. Additionally, HUSCO has engineering and sales facilities in Germany, Brazil and Korea.
While sales revenue growth could be enough for induction into the AEM Hall of Fame, under Gus’s watch, HUSCO International has pioneered a number of important innovations within the mobile hydraulic control industry. These include INCOVA independent metering technology, Flow Summation valve technology – the biggest innovation in spool valve design in the last 20 years, as well as many industry leading developments in closed-center, and EH control methods including Ag valves for hitch control, implement control and suspension. In 2016 the company plans introduce a highly innovative hydraulic pump that, in combination with Flow Summation technology, will provide 25% efficiency gains over existing systems currently available in the market.
The forward-thinking Ramirez also saw the opportunity to leverage the HUSCO off-highway technology base to enter into completely new markets including the automotive market. The automotive division produces almost 30 million valves annually that improve energy efficiency and has made significant inroads into the automotive component space as a tier one and tier two supplier to manufacturers worldwide. Automotive products include valves and controls for cam phasing, cylinder deactivation, emissions control, active suspensions, pump controls and transmissions.
Of equal importance, Ramirez has contributed to major educational efforts including a Ramirez/HUSCO Chair at the Georgia Institute of Technology, a lean Scholars program at the Medical College of Wisconsin and the Milwaukee School of Engineering, the lead gift in founding Schools That Can Milwaukee, and funding major expansions at the United Community Center, Milwaukee College Prep, St. Marcus and Carmen School of Science and Technology. Additionally, Ramirez has helped build Christian schools in Central America that have impacted over 50,000 students there since 2003. Recently, the Ramirez foundation helped fund the acquisition of three Milwaukee YMCA branches by the Waukesha YMCA to help the Milwaukee YMCA exit bankruptcy.
On November 14th, the official AEM Hall of Fame induction ceremony will take place and Gus Ramirez will join an exclusive club of inductees who have well-known names like Henry Harnischfeger, John Deere, JCB’s Joseph Cyril Bamford, Sir Anthony Bamford, and Robert LeTourneau, founder of LeTourneau Company who are makers of some of the world’s largest earth moving machines. According to Austin Ramirez, HUSCO’s CEO, “The induction into the AEM Hall of Fame is a well-deserved recognition for an outstanding leader who continues to make a tremendous impact in Milwaukee and around the world.”
Watch Gus Ramirez’s AEM Hall of Fame acceptance speech here.