Mercury Marine Celebrates its 75th Anniversary

Mercury Marine celebrates its 75th anniversary this year – from its humble beginnings in Wisconsin to its growth into one of the world’s leading provider of marine engines.

Mercury has celebrated its 75th anniversary throughout 2014 in ways that have reflected its strong heritage of innovation and leadership in the marine industry. Lance and Bronwyn were privileged to be invited and attend Mercury’s celebrations in Wisconsin and Florida this September in a series of events that recognised the roles of people who have played a great part in establishing the foundation of Mercury Marine’s business and future.

Mercury was founded by E. Carl Kiekhaefer in 1939 when he purchased a bankrupt engine manufacturing plant in Cedarburg, Wisconsin, not far from the Kiekhaefer family farm. The plant assets included 300 outboard engines that had been rejected by a large mail-order retailer due to defects and operating problems. Hoping to transform the engines into working capital to fund the future business he envisioned – magnetic separators for the dairy farm industry – Mr. Kiekhaefer redesigned, rebuilt and sold the engines to the retailer that had initially rejected them.

The engines sold immediately and Kiekhaefer suddenly found himself in the marine engine business.

Mercury made its initial mark in the marine industry by providing reliable, innovative products. But it didn’t take long before its engines were highly regarded for performance and speed.

Mercury directs the activities of more than 5,400 employees in dozens of countries from its global headquarters in Fond du Lac, Wis., and works hand in hand with more than 4,200 dealers and distributors around the world.