Following a special meeting to count ballots for the proposed merger of Equity Elevator and Trading Company of Wood Lake and Farmward Cooperative of Morgan the board of directors of Equity Elevator is excited to announce that the merger was approved by its voting members.

The merger will take effect Sept. 1, 2019.

In accordance with the plan of merger approved by the boards, a reverse triangular merger structure is being used. As part of that structure, only Equity Elevator members were required to vote.

In order to approve the merger, Equity Elevator had to achieve a two-thirds super majority vote in favor, as required by the State of Minnesota. It was able to meet that requirement with 86 percent of the votes in favor.

“The focus of Equity Elevator has always been to serve our farmer patrons with products and services that allow them to be profitable and successful,” said Les Sander, Equity Elevator board chairman. “The merger with Farmward allows us to continue providing that commitment into the future.”

As cited in a June 14, 2019 letter to members, benefits of the merger include economies of scale to improve operating efficiencies, expanded product offerings, improved access to capital and opportunities for growth and advancement for employees. 

“We are so pleased that Equity Elevator members have voted to unify the two cooperatives. Both boards feel strongly that this merger will bring additional value to our members,” added Calvin Aarons, Farmward board chairman. “Farmward Cooperative has a proud history on which the foundation has been laid for building a promising future for generations to come.”

The name of the merged cooperative will be Farmward Cooperative and will be led by current CEO, Dave Stuk. Equity Elevator CEO, Rod Winter, will retire as previously planned.

Additional information regarding the integration process will be made available throughout the next six weeks.

Equity Elevator and Trading Company is a localized and successful farm supply and grain marketing cooperative located in Wood Lake. With more than 100 years of service to its cooperative members, Equity Elevator provides services in agronomy, feed production, grain marketing and merchandising and retail farm supply.

Farmward® Cooperative is a diversified and progressive farm supply and grain marketing cooperative. Headquartered in Morgan the co-op has outlet locations in Clements, Comfrey, Danube, Morton, Olivia, Renville, Sacred Heart, Springfield and Wabasso.

It offers a full range of agricultural products and services, including grain handling, grain marketing services, crop protection, crop nutrients, seed, precision ag, bulk feed manufacturing and delivery and bulk delivery of energy products, including refined fuels, propane, and lubricants.

Farmward also provides producer financing, leasing, crop insurance and property and casualty insurance through subsidiary companies, AgQuest® Financial and Northland Capital.

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