Cooperatives merger will combine more than 20 locations
An “overwhelming” majority of stockholders for both Ag Partners Cooperative, based in Hiawatha, and Nemaha County Cooperative Association, based in Seneca voted Thursday, June 28, to approve a merger between the two companies. The new consolidated company will include more than 20 cooperative locations covering a territory from Wamego to Tarkio, Mo.
Voting occurred at separate meetings at the Fisher Center in Hiawatha and Corning Community Center in Corning. A two-thirds majority vote of the voting members present at each meeting was required to pass the merger.
The board of directors of both cooperatives agreed unanimously in May to pursue the merger.
Lincoln Hillyer, vice president of grain for Ag Partners, said with increased pressures and competition in the agriculture industry, cooperatives are growing in size. However, this partnership will allow for continued local control, Hillyer said.
“There is still local control with both management and board of directors making decisions for the company,” Hillyer said. “There is still a local presence.”
The merger will become effective Sept. 1, 2018, after which time the company will be known as Ag Partners Cooperative, Inc., and the corporate office will be located in Seneca.
With the merger, Hillyer said, both companies are hopeful that it will allow for better utilization of assets and personnel.
“Until you get into it, you don’t know what exact changes might occur, but we are confident we will be able to share people and assets pretty well to help out both companies,” Hillyer said.