Our History

Standex began as the quintessential New England company, with deep local roots, a culture of stability and a commitment to conservative management.

Our Company was founded in 1955 by John Bolten, a successful German entrepreneur. Originally, he was in the business of manufacturing plastic combs in Andover, Massachusetts. That business evolved into a vinyl sheeting company, which he operated under the name of Bolta Plastics. Bolten sold Bolta Plastics to General Tire Company, providing the capital for his acquisition of the Standard Publishing Company, a Cincinnati, Ohio-based publisher of religious books and magazines, and Roehlen Engraving, a Rochester, New York-based engraver of embossing plates and rolls for texturization. The two businesses were merged to form Standard International, later renamed Standex International Corporation.

Over the years, we have built a unique history and a rich legacy of diversity by acquiring a wide range of companies or businesses. Our company contributed to the early development of a famous designer’s clothing empire; we made Lestoil a household name on six continents; and we participated in writing instruments manufacturer A.T. Cross becoming a public company. Along the way, Standex – the corporate name we adopted in 1973 – increasingly came to be known for its engineering capabilities. Today, we operate manufacturing plants and distribution facilities throughout the U.S. and in Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, Mexico, India, Turkey, South Africa, Singapore, Japan, Russia, Malaysia, South Korea, and Europe. At our last fiscal year end (June 30, 2019), we numbered 5,000 employees, of which 2,200 were in the U.S. We are proud of our 54-year history as a public company and 50-year history with a New York Stock Exchange listing, where we have one of the longest uninterrupted records of paying quarterly dividends.

While our company has evolved in its portfolio and global reach, our culture has not. We remain committed to stability, and many of the businesses we acquired in our early years continue as part of the Standex family. Our present headquarters in Salem, New Hampshire are but a few miles from our original location in Andover. Standex has had only five CEOs in its history: Dan Hogan, Mr. Bolten’s son-in-law; Tom King; Ted Trainor; Roger Fix; and David Dunbar, our current Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer. Most importantly, we remain committed to holding a diverse portfolio of companies that provide value to our shareholders.