Ganser Company - Ganser History
Four generations, over 70 years of happy customers, and a lot of hard work...
Imagine starting a new company during the Great Depression. That is exactly what our founder, great grandpa Ernest Ganser (pictured on the left) did in 1939. After his father sold the family farm to a neighbor when it was promised to him, at the age of 52, Ernest started a new career and established Madison Roofing with his two sons, Hugh and Lenard. Since Ernest was still a farmer at heart, most of the work he initially sold was roofing and siding projects to farmers around the greater Madison area.
At the onset of World War II, both Hugh and Len left the company to defend America, leaving Ernest with a small crew. After the war was over, Hugh came back to work full-time at the company. Soon thereafter, Ernest and Hugh became business partners and renamed the company Ganser Home Improvement. During the day, Ernest and Hugh would work together installing roofing and siding. In the evening, Hugh would go home to have dinner with Georgiann and the 8 children, shower, and then go door to door selling.
In 1950, Hugh (pictured on the right) bought out Ernest's interests in the company as Ernest kept on working as a shingle roofer until his retirement at age 72! A turning point was just about to happen. Hugh then made a decision to end working on the crew and focus more on selling and growing the company. As Hugh tells the story, so that he wasn't temped to go back on the crew, he drove out into the country and launched his hammer into a corn field.
During that period, with returning soldiers building houses and having families, the company began to flourish by adding a full time accountant, twelve roofers, and four siders. By the end of the 1950's, Ganser Home Improvement was becoming a household name for roofing and siding in Madison. To keep up with the demand, in 1959, Hugh built the current office and warehouse facility. In 1962, Ganser Home Improvement became a corporation.
A decade later in 1974, Hugh's third oldest son Dennis joined the company. Dennis brought his experience from serving in the Air Force for four years, and loaded with a degree from Stout University in hotel and restaurant management. For ten years Dennis and Hugh worked together selling and managing the company. By the late 1970's, Ganser Home Improvement had grown to a 35-man crew. After working and growing the company for 34 years, Hugh retired in 1981.
When Dennis (pictured to the left) became the new owner, he departmentalized the company into residential and commercial divisions and changed the corporation's name to Ganser Company Inc. Dennis' love of design gave way to many new products being introduced for the first time into the Madison market. Some of which were: rubber flat roofing, vinyl siding, he patented Trim Clad siding trim system, and Cedar Shake Thatch (of which he was honored at a national level.) Another amazing accomplishment was working with the State of Wisconsin to enforce ASTM 3462 which prevented inferior shingles from being installed on unknowing, customer's homes. The code was eventually adopted nationally. Dennis built a new showroom in 2008 to help our customer's visualize the answers for their home improvement needs.
Our company is currently owned by Travis Ganser (pictured to the right), who purchased the company from Dennis in 2009. Travis worked for the company cleaning offices, maintaining the warehouse, roofing, siding, and eventually selling and managing since he'd been about 8 years old. With that experience, and some time in the construction management program at UW Platteville, he computerized the selling process, created a marketing plan to reach out to new customers, and introduced exciting new Fiberglass windows and siding to the lineup of products. Travis' most current and exciting addition to Ganser Company, is a full service remodeling division.
Moving onward as we reflect back on the history of serving and bring new ideas and answers to our customers, we thank God for countless blessings. As Ganser Company approaches 100 years and possibly five generations, Travis wonders if one of his six children will continue on with the family business: What talents and services would they bring to our customers? Only time will tell.