Crane builder company. Manitowoc group subsidiary.
Grove Worldwide got its start in 1946, when John L. Grove and his brother Dwight established Grove Brothers, a manufacturer of farm wagons.
In 1947, the Groves sought a third partner, Wayne Nicarry. The company incorporated and took on a new name, Grove Manufacturing Co.
The Brothers found out that the process of manufacturing farm wagons required handling large amounts of heavy steel.
At the time, the preferred method of material handling was using a mechanical crane.
John L. Grove saw the mechanical crane as an inefficiency which wasted man hours.
He turned his efforts towards trying to solve these problems by developing his own crane design.
John and his brother developed the world’s first operational hydraulic crane in the late 40’s.
Initially the Groves had no intention of selling cranes; they merely constructed one for use on their own property.
But customers began to enquire about the crane, wanting to purchase one for themselves.
In 1952, the Groves gave into demand and started marketing their invention.
The brothers split responsibilities; John ran the crane business, and Dwight ran the agricultural business.
By the end of the decade, John had expanded the crane product line to include four-wheel drive, rough terrain, and truck-mounted cranes.
In addition to manufacturing the world’s first hydraulic crane, Grove has had a number of other significant accomplishments.
In 1968, they brought the first slewing rough terrain crane to market.
In 1970, they produced world’s first trapezoidal boom.
And in 1986, they produced the TM3000, which to date is the largest telescopic boom ever made in the United States.
The late 70’s and early 80’s were a time of growth for Grove. In 1978 they acquired National Crane Corp; in 1979 they bought Manlift Inc., and in 1983 they brought Coles Cranes Ltd.
Over a decade later in 1995, they took over the German hydraulic crane company Krupp.
In 2001, Grove Worldwide came into financial difficulties and was forced to enter into Chapter 11 bankruptcy.
In September 2001, they emerged from the bankruptcy proceedings. Soon after, in March 2002, it was announced The Manitowoc Company, Inc. had entered into an agreement to purchase Grove Worldwide.
The deal was finalized in August 2002. Manitowoc paid $278 million for ownership of Grove and all of its subsidiaries.
The Grove brand name lives on as a subsidiary of Manitowoc. Grove still maintains manufacturing operations in Shady Grove, Pennsylvania; as well as a European manufacturing facility in Wilhelmshaven, Germany.