Laclede Chain Restructures to Provide Niche Market Expertise to Rigging & Marine Industries
ST. LOUIS, MO.— Laclede Chain Manufacturing Co., a nationwide manufacturer of domestic industrial chain, has recently restructured its sales division to better meet the needs of specialized customers, specifically in the rigging and marine industries.
With this restructuring, as of October 1, 2019 Laclede has promoted Jeff Doerge to General Manager of its new Rigging & Marine Division. Doerge has been with Laclede for over a decade, and has spent the last five years focused specifically on developing his expertise in the rigging and marine sectors.
Laclede Chain company president Tim Riley is grateful for Doerge’s commitment to this growing sector. “Until just over 5 years ago, we were doing very little in rigging and marine,” Riley said. “Then, we started to see a growing need in the market and Jeff jumped at the opportunity to learn the industry in order to help these customers grow their businesses. His commitment to understanding the needs of our rigging and marine customers has been hugely valuable, and I’m looking forward to seeing him make an even greater impact in his new role.”
The domestic marine sector in particular is experiencing healthy growth. As a result of conservation efforts, commercial fishing in the U.S. is booming as once-depleted fish stocks are being rebuilt. Consumer data also shows that demand for seafood (especially salmon) continues to increase.
“This renewed focus on conservation means there is an increased demand for environmentally safe chain products that allow commercial fisheries to practice sustainable techniques,” said Doerge. “We are working with more and more of the industry’s key players to help them develop these innovative products.”
Scallop fishing in particular has been an area where Laclede has recently helped key customers succeed. “We recently developed a new size of scallop rings and links for a customer after other chain manufacturers told him it couldn’t be done,” said Doerge. “The new nets bring in healthy yields while disturbing the surrounding environment as little as possible.”
Doerge is also focused on developing his expertise and understanding of the rigging sector that he serves. He spends time traveling to visit customers to learn firsthand about the challenges facing them in their day-to-day operations. He recently underwent (and continues to pursue) continuing education courses in rigging to hone his knowledge.
“Laclede continues to lead the chain industry in safety with our Hi-Viz line for overhead lifting,” Doerge said. “And with any of our Grade 120 products, we offer the strongest American-made overhead lifting chain and assemblies on the market today.”
Doerge’s vision for serving the rigging industry is for Laclede to become the foremost chain expert for serving customers in this sector. “It’s my goal to further specialize in serving these guys,” Doerge said. “We want to get narrow and deep into serving different niches in their market.”
To develop and create custom marine and rigging solutions, Doerge and Laclede Chain’s lead engineer, Melissa Searle, work with customers one-on-one. They collaborate with customers’ engineering departments frequently to optimize designs for use in the field using 3D printing technology.
“Because of 3D printing, we’re able to help our customers prototype new solutions faster and more cost-effectively,” said Searle.
Doerge is proud to see the company’s new strategic focus create results for its customers. “We are looking forward to continuing to provide these sectors with the support and expertise they need to be successful,” Doerge said.
About Laclede Chain Manufacturing: Laclede Chain Manufacturing has over 250,000 square feet of manufacturing and distribution space in four locations across the United States. The company is the oldest domestic chain manufacturer in the United States and has over 200 employees across its system.