D.W. Davies & Co. was founded by David W. Davies in 1951,operated as a proprietorship until 1956, then incorporated as D.W. Davies & Co.,Inc.
The company manufactured dry cleaning soaps, special spotters for dry cleaners, as well as sizing and water repellents for garments. The company also compounded laundry soaps and laundry specialty products, such as special spot removers and water conditioners. Another line of products manufactured was a line of water treatment products such as boiler compounds, cooling tower compounds and special water conditioners for water with iron content.
In the late 1950’s, the dry cleaning industry had some major changes. In the mid to late 50’s the incoming of wash and wear fabrics caused a considerable drop in total volume of dry cleaning. In the late 50’s “Coin-op” dry cleaning was also introduced. Between the introduction of “Coin-op” dry cleaning and the introduction of wash and wear garments, the dry cleaning industry suffered a major blow. All larger type cleaners entirely went out of business and the only type of dry cleaner that really survived was the smaller “ma & pa” type dry cleaners. There were some exceptions to this, but not many. Thus with the fall of the dry cleaning industry, the Davies Company was forced to reorganize and diversify.
Focusing our talents towards water treatment products, such as boiler compounds, etc. to the industrial trade, D.W. Davies & Co., Inc. started to become more and more diversified.
In 1960 Lightning Products of Racine was purchased. Lightning Products, a Racine company, was founded in 1931 compounded “Lightning Glass Cleaner”, plus a full line of automotive cleaners. In 1962, Armco Chemical, manufacturer of “Magic Glass” Glass cleaner was purchased. In 1963, Northwest Sanitary Supply, of St. Paul, was purchased. Northwest Supply was a manufacturer of floor waxes and cleaners, as well as a distributor of cleaning equipment, mops, etc. This gave D.W. Davies & Co.,Inc. a very solid customer base in floor maintenance. In 1964, Northland Chemical Co. of Minneapolis was purchased. Northland was a manufacturer of boiler compounds, cooling tower compounds, as well as industrial metal cleaners, etc. They actually competed with D.W. Davies & Co., Inc. in the Minneapolis area.
In 1965 Miro Products of Milwaukee was purchased. Miro was a manufacturer of “No-Touch” furniture polish. In 1967, Kleen Key Manufacturing, a manufacturer of a complete line of automotive products, founded in 1934, was purchased. Edsol, of Colorado was purchased in 1969. They were a manufacturer of odor control products, which gave the Davies Co. a solid entry into the odor control market.
The purchase of these various companies has made the Davies Company a highly diversified company, which has indeed a great marketing advantage over single-line companies. It also has given our company a great continuing growth pattern. We now have a strong marketing base in the floor finish and cleaning areas. The industrial products, such as grinding compounds, cutting oils, metal cleaners, etc. gives us a strong base in the industrial area. We also now have a very strong marketing base in automotive chemicals, such as car washing detergents, vinyl cleaners and dressings, auto polishes, etc. We also have an excellent marketing base in the swim pool line.
Our technical people also have their specialty in various lines. The Davies Co. is a strong believer in “top quality” products with “top quality” technical field service. We have our own aircraft which enables us to render technical service for our customers in a hurry, if needed. All of our salesmen are not necessarily chemists, thus we have chemist services available to them, by telephone, internet, fax or in person, even if we need to fly to you to see on-site problems or questions.