Edw. C. Levy Co.
Edw. C. Levy Co.
Sales: $350 million (2000 est.)
NAIC: 327992 Ground or Treated Mineral and Earth Manufacturing; 32732 Ready-Mix Concrete Manufacturing; 42132 Brick, Stone, and Related Construction Material Wholesalers; 324121 Asphalt Paving Mixture and Block Manufacturing; 23411 Highway and Street Construction
Edw. C. Levy Co. is a Detroit, Michigan-based firm that hauls, processes, and resells slag (an iron- and steel-production waste product) ; manufactures and ships concrete and asphalt; and performs other related tasks including limestone, sand, and gravel production and metal recovery. Levy operates in the United States, Australia, and Thailand through a number of subsidiaries and joint ventures. The privately held firm is owned by the heirs of its founder and run by his son, Ed Levy, Jr.
The Edw. C. Levy Company was founded in 1918 by its namesake near Detroit, Michigan, as a trucking company. Over the next decade the company began to haul slag from the Ford Motor Company’s Rouge plant and the Hanna Furnace Co. on Zug Island, later crushing and selling it for use as a road base material. Slag, a byproduct of iron and steel production, was also used as an ingredient in concrete, as landfill, and for other applications. Slag forms on the surface of molten metal during the manufacturing process, and is separated as waste. The composition and usable qualities of slag vary depending upon whether steel or iron production is its source.
During the 1930s Levy expanded its capabilities, building a plant to crush slag and mix it with calcium chloride for use as a road base. In the late 1940s the company enlarged its slag operation by constructing a plant on Dix Avenue in Detroit to handle Ford-generated slag. Edw. C. Levy Co. was formally incorporated in 1946.
A new contract was won in 1950 from Great Lakes Steel to remove slag from that company’s Zug Island steel mill; a similar contract with McLouth Steel Corp. followed in 1954. That same year the company built two more slag processing plants in Trenton, Michigan, just south of Detroit. During the 1950s the company also began to perform additional metal handling and processing services for other companies, and developed new processes for reclaiming metal from steel slag.
The 1960s was a period of rapid growth for Edw. C. Levy. In 1961 the company formed a subsidiary, Delta Trucking Co., to haul aggregate products to customers. Aggregate was a main ingredient of cement, and consisted of a mixture of materials such as sand, gravel, and slag. Levy also overhauled its Dix Avenue plant during the year, making it one of the most efficient facilities of its type in the United States. The year 1962 saw the acquisition of three asphalt plants from Cadillac Asphalt Paving Co., and the formation of another subsidiary, Asphalt Products. The company patented a transportable liquid slag carrier for use in trucks during the year as well. In 1963 another subsidiary, Lyon Sand & Gravel Co., was formed in Lyon Township, Michigan, to produce sand and gravel. Its first plant was put into operation the following year.
The year 1964 was the company’s busiest to date. During the year Levy purchased three concrete plants from Clawson Transit Mix, built three new ones of its own in the Detroit area, and formed a ready-mix concrete business in Redford Township, Michigan. Levy also formed two new subsidiaries, Eagle Trucking Company in Wixom, which hauled sand and gravel aggregate to areas outside of Detroit, and Detroit Lime Co., which sold burnt lime to steelmakers and other companies from a newly built plant. The company also licensed Kress Corp. of Illinois to manufacture the liquid slag carrier it had patented.
Another trucking concern was formed in 1966. Falcon Trucking Co. would haul aggregate and cement to customers in Michigan. The same year Levy built a central-mix concrete plant in the Detroit suburb of Southfield. In 1967 two inactive Detroit-area concrete plants were purchased and reopened, and a limestone quarrying and processing operation was acquired from Medusa Cement Company. The Kelleys Island, Ohio-based plant was Levy’s first foray outside of Michigan.
The company continued to expand its concrete operations at the end of the 1960s, building new central-mix plants in Romulus, Michigan, and at Lyon Sand & Gravel, and purchasing Breckling Concrete Co. of Cleveland, Ohio, most of whose facilities were subsequently leased to Collingwood Shale. Killins Gravel of Ann Arbor, Michigan, was also bought, and a central-mix concrete plant opened at its facility there, while a subsidiary called Concrete Components Co. was formed to make hollow-core building members at a new plant in Novi, Michigan. The company also built an asphalt mixing plant in Sterling Heights, and a slag processing facility at Burns Harbor, Indiana, to service Bethlehem Steel, and began marketing a mix of slag, lime, and fly ash under the trade name Slagcrete for use as a road base.
The early 1970s saw Levy’s growth continue. In 1972 the company purchased the ready mix and sand and gravel businesses of South Bend, Indiana-based South Lake Service Co., which then began operating under the name St. Joseph Materials Co. Levy also purchased a cement plant in Detroit which it christened Jefferson Marine Terminal and began using it for receiving, grinding, and shipping cement, and bought Cadillac Asphalt Paving Co. Another patent was received during this period for a chemical treatment of slag cooling water that eliminated odors. In 1973 and 1974 Levy formed three additional subsidiaries: Hatchet, Inc., which operated portable facilities for recovering foundry waste scrap; Gravel Trucking Co., which hauled hot asphalt mixtures and construction and steel mill wastes; and Indian Trucking Co., which transported aggregates in northern Indiana.
In the early 1980s Levy bought dock and ready-mix, pre-stressed concrete facilities on the Saginaw River in Michigan, as well as the ready-mix cement assets of Genesee Cement Products Co. of Flint, which was renamed Clawson Flint. In 1983 Levy bought Ace Asphalt & Paving Co. of Flint and Medusa Cement Co. of Oakland County, Michigan, renaming the latter Milford Sand & Gravel Co. New service contracts were signed during this period with U.S. Steel, LTV, and Timken and the company also formed more trucking subsidiaries, including Stacy Trucking and Triple E Trucking, the latter located in Colorado Springs, Colorado. At the same time Levy purchased the asphalt making and paving equipment of Colorado Springs-based Schmidt Construction Co., and also acquired sand, gravel, and crushed stone operations from Blount Materials in Michigan, which it renamed Burroughs Material Co.
The company expanded into Florida in 1986 with acquisitions of trucking company Advantage Transportation, limestone quarry operator Coral Rock, Inc., concrete maker West Coast Industries, and builder SEU Construction. In 1987 Levy’s Colorado-based asphalt operations were expanded, and Colorado quarrying and sand/gravel businesses were bought. That year Levy also purchased an asphalt production and aggregate mining operation from Mesa Material Co. of Phoenix, Arizona. Closer to home, in 1988 portions of Levy’s Dix Avenue slag plant and Jefferson Marine Terminal facilities were rebuilt and upgraded, making the former more environmentally friendly. The year 1988 also saw another trucking business created, State Trucking, which hauled and paved asphalt.
Launch of Foreign Operations: 1989
With Levy now expanding into select areas around the United States, it was only logical that a foreign move would be made. This took place in 1989, when a joint venture in Port Kembla, Australia, was formed with trucking company Cleary Bros, and Queensland Cement Ltd. The new entity was named Australian Steel Mill Services Pty Ltd. (ASMS), and was expected to process up to 1.5 million tons of slag per year for removal of metal content, with 200,000 tons to be shipped to Queensland Cement for use as an ingredient in concrete. Some 50 people were to be employed by ASMS, which would spend A$60 million to build a private road system for transporting the heavy loads of slag. An Australian scrap detinning facility was added in 1992 under the name Australian Metal Recovery (AMR) .
Our Mission: Supply our employees with a safe and secure work environment and equip them with the tools to enable them to meet their individual objectives .
Provide our internal and external customers with the highest quality products and services through a complete understanding of their needs and a total commitment to their success .
Enrich our culture through trust, teamwork, individual initiative, high expectations, active involvement and open communications. Promote innovations and harvest ideas at all levels of the organization to foster personal growth and continuous corporate improvement. Repay the communities that support us by operating safe and environmentally sound businesses while sharing our success with worthy charitable causes. Grow our business through marketing, research, and technical advances, while recycling and using the earth’s natural resources in a manner which enhances the quality of life. Observe standards of moral and ethical conduct which will easily withstand any public or private scrutiny. Always treat others as we would wish to be treated and work hard to gain the same treatment from others .
Stateside, Levy continued to form new subsidiaries in the early 1990s, including Centennial Materials Co., which acquired aggregate, mining, and sand and gravel businesses in Colorado; Exact Express, a Michigan-based trucking company; and Mercier Analytical Laboratory Co. Levy also leased its Detroit Lime Co. operation to Global Stone Co., and expanded the Mesa Materials Co. operation in Arizona.
In 1996 Levy formed several companies to perform services for Steel Minimills (steel mills that melted scrap metal to make new steel), including Fulton Mill Services in Ohio, Charleston Mill Services in South Carolina, and Midwest Mill Services in Illinois. The company also formed two other international joint ventures in Thailand. Siam Steel Mill Services (SSMS) and Chonburi Steel Mill Services (CSMS) would perform slag removal at six steel mills.
The following year, Levy acquired the sand & gravel operations of Vulcan Materials of Indiana and American Aggregates of Michigan. The company also sold concrete plants in Florida and Flint, Michigan, and formed an aggregate trucking subsidiary in Oxford, Michigan, called Norse Trucking. A new aggregate shipping dock was opened on the Rouge River in Dearborn, Michigan as well.
The late 1990s saw Edw. C. Levy Co. in pursuit of ISO 9002 certification, which was won for its Canton and Delta, Ohio steel mill service facilities, Australian Metal Recovery, and its two Thai joint ventures. In 2000, Levy also formed a slag service company in Ashland, Kentucky, to operate as A-K Steel Corporation’s Ashland plant.
After more than 80 years in operation, Edw. C. Levy Co. had assembled an extensive portfolio of companies. Best known for processing and selling over ten million tons of slag per year, Levy’s metal recovery operations returned more than 1.5 million tons of steel to its clients, which included the largest U.S. steelmaking companies. The firm also operated a number of aggregate making, cement, asphalt, and trucking operations in the United States and abroad. Levy was responsible for several technical innovations, including the molten slag carrier and slag-odor neutralizing chemical sprays, as well.
Delta Trucking Co.; Asphalt Products; Lyon Sand & Gravel Co.; Eagle Trucking Co.; Detroit Lime Co.; Falcon Trucking Co.; Killins Gravel Co.; Breckling Concrete Co.; Concrete Components Co.; St. Joseph Materials Co.; Jefferson Marine Terminal; Cadillac Asphalt Paving Co.; Hatchet, Inc.; Gravel Trucking Co.; Indian Trucking Co.; Stacy Trucking; Milford Sand & Gravel Co.; Clawson Concrete Co.; Ace Asphalt & Paving; Triple E Trucking Co.; Burroughs Materials Co.; Advantage Transportation; Coral Rock, Inc.; West Coast Industries; SEU Construction; Schmidt Construction Co.; State Trucking; Centennial Materials Co.; Australian Metal Recovery Pty Ltd. (Australia) ; Exact Express; Mercier Analytical Laboratory Co.; Fulton Mill Services; Charleston Mill Services; Midwest Mill Services; Norse Trucking; Ashland Slag Co.; Australian Steel Mill Services Pty Ltd. (Australia; 50%) ; SSMS (Siam Steel Mill Services) (Thailand; 50%) ; CSMS (Chonburi Steel Mill Services) (Thailand; 50%.
Envirosource, Inc.; Harsco Corporation; Holnam Cement Co.; LaFarge Corporation; U.S. Aggregates, Inc.
- Edward C. Levy forms a trucking company in Detroit, Michigan.
- First slag-hauling contracts are received from Ford Motor Co. and Hanna Furnace Co.
- Levy builds a plant to crush slag and manufacture calcium chloride.
- Company is incorporated in Michigan.
- Facility built in Detroit to process slag for Ford.
- Two new slag processing plants built in Trenton, Michigan.
- Company patents a mobile carrier for molten slag.
- Levy Co. purchases, constructs a total of six concrete plants.
- Trade name “Slagcrete” is registered for mix of slag, lime, and fly ash.
- Levy patents a chemical spray that neutralizes slag odors.
- Levy acquires trucking, quarrying, concrete, and construction firms in Florida.
- Australian slag processing joint venture is formed.
- Two joint ventures are formed in Thailand to process slag.
- Levy subsidiary in Ohio receives ISO 9002 certification, others follow.
Deans, Alan, “Competition—A Concrete Case,” Australian Financial Review, August 9, 1993, p. 56.
——, “Spin-Off for Kembla Slag,” Sydney Morning Herald, March 4, 1989, p. 45.
“Levy Gets Slag Pacts,” American Metal Market, November 22, 1995, p. 13.
“Rich Sand Born of Slag, Effluent,” Sydney Morning Herald, March 26, 1992, p. 4.