Great Plains Manufacturing, Inc., was established on April 1, 1976. Since our inception, company founder Roy Applequist has led Great Plains as President and has overseen the company's growth from modest beginnings to become one of the largest privately held manufacturers of agricultural implements for tillage, seeding and planting in the United States, as well as a leading producer of dirt-working, turf-maintenance, and landscaping equipment. Great Plains comprises five divisions: Great Plains Ag, Great Plains International, Land Pride, Great Plains Acceptance Corporation (GPAC), and Great Plains Trucking.
For the first two and a half years, Great Plains was located in a small shop in Salina, Kansas, before moving operations to Assaria, Kansas, in 1979. Today, we maintain our corporate headquarters in Salina and operate 1.5 million square feet (139,355 square meters) of manufacturing space across eight state-of-the-art manufacturing facilities in central Kansas, including the communities of Abilene, Assaria, Ellsworth, Kipp, Lucas, Salina, Tipton, and Enterprise. Great Plains also maintains manufacturing facilities in Sleaford, England.
The Great Plains product mix was extended and diversified in 1986 with the launch of the Land Pride division. Land Pride has since rapidly established itself as a leading brand in finish mowers, rotary tillers, rotary cutters, landscape-seeding equipment, zero-turn mowers and dirt-working implements. Today, Land Pride products are sold through more than 2,000 independent dealerships across the United States and are exported worldwide. In response to customer demand, two important further additions were made to the family of Great Plains subsidiaries. These include Great Plains Trucking, which operates over 75 trucks, delivering products to our North American dealers and hauling raw materials back to Great Plains, and Great Plains Acceptance Corporation, which provides product financing.
Great Plains' range of equipment and its international presence was enhanced in 2010 with the purchase of Simba International, the UK's leading cultivation equipment manufacturer. In addition to the new office and manufacturing facilities in the UK, the Great Plains division has subsidiary offices in Russia, Ukraine, France and Eastern Europe.
At Great Plains, our philosophy is built upon investing in state-of-the-art technology and talented people to design, engineer and produce leading-edge implements and products. Our 1,500+ experienced employees take great pride in the products we produce for our customers.