Springfield, MO

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No. 9 SRC takeover

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Dozens of businesses have been created under the umbrella of SRC Holdings Corp. since a group of employees purchased Springfield Remanufacturing Corp. from International Harvester in 1983.

At the time, however, the decision to buy was a risk. The remanufacturing facility was struggling in the midst of an economic downturn that had 11 percent unemployment and a Dow Jones average in the 700-point range. Faced with the grim reality that the plant would be shut down by its parent company, Jack Stack and 12 other International Harvester managers decided to buy the business on behalf of the employees for $9 million.

The purchase saved those local jobs – and then some.

By 2007, a total of 47 companies had been formed under the SRC umbrella, including Great Game of Business, built around SRC’s open-book management practice.

Stack co-authored two books, “Great Game of Business” and “A Stake in the Outcome.”

In 2008, Stack threw a 25th anniversary celebration with about 3,000 attendees and a concert by the Doobie Brothers and Three Dog Night (a nod to reality, considering Stack’s first choice would have been Jimmy Buffet, he joked). At the time, Stack said he was thinking about a 2012 retirement.

In 2009, Stack’s son, Ryan Stack, was named general manager of SRC Heavy Duty – ironically, the same position Jack Stack had held 30 years earlier. And the company once again was faced with recession. Jack Stack may be extending the timeline for his retirement, as Stack said it would be difficult to walk away amid this period of déjà vu.

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

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