An Iowa-based company will be inducted into the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Hall of Fame next week. Winnebago Industries of Forest City has been in the recreational vehicle-making business more than four decades, and company spokeswoman Sheila Davis says an S-B-A loan helped get the fledgling Modernistic Industries rolling. An S-B-A news release says the 23 companies being inducted are “the best of the best…that started small but with big dreams for success.” Others include: America Online, Callaway Golf Company, FedEx, Hewlett-Packard, Intel, General Mills and Staples. As they struggled to start out, Davis says the company got a 75-thousand dollar S-B-A loan in 1960 to help form the company.The name was changed from Modernistic Industries to Winnebago in 1961 and the company got another S-B-A loan for 390-thousand dollars in 1965, following a devastating fire the previous year. Davis says the S-B-A was “certainly very instrumental in getting us off the ground.” The company started off with 17 employees in 1958 and now has 37-hundred employees. Revenues last year hit 828-point-four-million dollars, so, Davis jokes, “certainly it was a good risk.” The Hall of Fame induction ceremony is Friday (September 19) in Washington D.C.
You are here: / / Winnebago wins SBA award