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McQueary Brothers Drug Co. President David McQueary decided to sell his family-owned company due to industry wide consolidation.
McQueary Brothers Drug Co. President David McQueary decided to sell his family-owned company due to industry wide consolidation.

No. 28 Banta, McQueary sales

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In April 2008, two long-standing, homegrown businesses with a combined 187 years of experience joined a trend toward consolidation, announcing their sales to large corporations.

Food service distributor Banta Foods Inc. had been a family-run business for 103 years when it sold to Wisconsin-based Reinhart Foodservice LLC for an undisclosed amount.

And McQueary Brothers Drug Co. maintained its pharmaceutical wholesale business for 84 years before selling to San Francisco-based McKesson Corp. (NYSE: MCK) for $190 million.

Leaders with both companies cited challenges within their respective industries as factors behind the sales. Concerns for McQueary Bros. included increased government involvement in health care and increased pressure from competition. Banta’s pressures were economy-driven, due to rising fuel prices, inflation, wages and health care.

At the time of its sale, McQueary Bros. employed 111 workers at its 66,000-square-foot warehouse at 4727 E. Kearney St.

McKesson announced in October 2008 it would close the Springfield operation, citing the proximity of its seven Midwestern distribution facilities. McKesson offered employees a severance package and the opportunity to relocate, and the McQueary family shared $21 million from the sale with its staff.

Banta Foods continues to operate under the same name, as one of Reinhart’s 24 locations.

According to Reinhart’s Web site, www.rfsdelivers.com, the company is the third largest privately owned food service distributor in the country. It employed roughly 200 staffers at its Springfield operations, 1620 N. Packer Road, at the time of the sale.

See the full list of pivotal points chosen by the Springfield Business Journal here.
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