A talk with Pat Weiler of Weiler Forestry – the new owner of Cat’s purpose-built forestry 



Earlier this year, Weiler Forestry Inc. entered into a definitive agreement with Caterpillar Inc. for the purchase of its purpose-built forestry business.

With this agreement, Weiler acquired Caterpillar’s purpose-built forestry product line and operations facilities in LaGrange, Georgia; Auburn, Alabama; and Smithfield, North Carolina.

Weiler currently produces an extensive portfolio of products and has a longstanding history of successfully manufacturing purpose-built equipment distributed through the Cat dealer network. Weiler Forestry is now designing and manufacturing the purpose-built forestry products, which will continue to be available through the Cat dealer network.

It’s been a busy time for Weiler Forestry, but we recently caught up with Pat Weiler, President & CEO of the company, for a brief talk.

Can you please tell us a bit about yourself, related to the industry and the company?

“Well, I began my career as a Design Engineer and became a Director of Engineering in 1983. I held multiple roles in senior management through to 1999.

I have over 35 years of experience leading the manufacturing efforts for diverse privately held agricultural and construction equipment companies.

I founded Weiler in 2000 and began producing equipment for major OEM manufacturers with the intent of developing new product. Over the last 19 years, we have grown the company into a major manufacturer of multiple product lines for the paving industry. Weiler now sells through 190 sales offices and service centers worldwide.

I now lead Weiler in the development of new products, while enhancing relationships with dealers and customers.”

Can you tell us some more about the history of Weiler?

“Weiler’s track record of being a nimble, customer-driven, and very reactive manufacturer has led to its success in the paving industry. Rapidly developing new products and solutions to complement the existing Caterpillar dealer portfolio is a winning combination. Weiler is based in Knoxville, Iowa, and is a vertically integrated manufacturer of pavers, transfer vehicles, concrete mixer trucks, graders, and road wideners — and now, purpose-built forestry equipment. We rely on over 500 competent and driven employees in Knoxville and are already impressed with the talent and commitment we’ve seen from our 275 new forestry employees.”

What products did Weiler acquire from Caterpillar Inc.?

“Weiler entered into an agreement with Caterpillar Inc. to purchase the purpose-built forestry business, which consists of wheel skidders, track feller bunchers, wheel feller bunchers, knuckleboom loaders, and related operations facilities. Caterpillar will remain producing the forestry excavator product lines as well as the complementary products that serve the millyards and other forestry segments.”

How does Forestry fit into the Weiler Portfolio?

“We believe that the purpose-built forestry product line is the ideal addition to our current product portfolio. We have a proven track record of working with Cat dealers all over the world to respond rapidly to customers with specialized product needs. We’re confident that our existing product line experience, our flexible design and manufacturing strategy, and our commitment to customers provide a strong foundation to successfully serve the purpose-built forestry segment.”

Does Weiler have plans to expand the product portfolio?

“Successfully developing and introducing new products is at the core of what we do at Weiler. We will apply the same approach to forestry, focusing on customer needs to make their jobs easier and more profitable.”

When can we expect to have Weiler branded product in the market, and will there be any immediate changes?

“We are now shipping Weiler branded products to Cat Dealers.

Customers can expect the same level of customer support they are used to from the best dealer organization in the world. We will work diligently, focusing on the needs of our forestry customers to address product needs and improve manufacturing flexibility.”

TimberWest November/December 2013
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