Paper Transport, Inc.Read MoreRead Less
When Lennie and Joan Shefchik purchased their first home 45 years ago, it was Denmark State Bank who helped them through the process. Twenty-one years later when starting Paper Transport, they went to the Bank for assistance. Today the relationship between the Shefchiks, Paper Transport and Denmark State Bank is a true partnership.
“We have had a great local support over the years from Denmark State Bank,” says Lennie Shefchik, one of the founders of Paper Transport. “They are more than our bankers, they are our business partners. They know us as people, learned our strengths and weaknesses and worked alongside us. Working with the decision makers at the bank allowed us to get things done.”
“They did more than just review our financial statements,” says Joan Shefchik.
“They know us personally and we have a great amount of respect for one another. We have surrounded ourselves with really good people.”
Jeff Shefchik, Lennie and Joan’s nephew, now serves as President of Paper Transport Inc. Starting in 2003 as the Director of Finance and Accounting, Jeff brought a wealth of knowledge and innovation to the company and continues to look to his business partners as crucial pieces of his strategy.
“Working with Denmark State Bank provides ease and speed of doing business,” says Jeff Shefchik. “They are local and they know us. As we grew, Denmark State Bank was very proactive in taking care of our needs. If they could not provide a service, they found a partner who could. That says a lot. Jeff Vandenplas is my sounding board and I appreciate that.”
Paper Transport, Inc. is headquartered in Ashwaubenon and has operations based in Wisconsin, Illinois, Ohio, Georgia, Florida, Oklahoma and Texas. They started with three trucks and four people in 1990, and today their company has grown to just over 500 trucks and 640 team members.
Homestead DecorRead MoreRead Less
Diane Gerhard knows a lot about customer service, especially in the retail industry. As the owner of three unique and successful businesses in Green Bay, customer service and strong ties to the community are what set her apart from her competitors.
“I was with Denmark State Bank in the early years of my business but switched to a bigger national bank for a period of time,” said Diane. “I decided to switch back to Denmark State Bank about two years ago and have been very happy with the decision to make the change.”
Homestead Decor was Diane’s first business, which opened in 1986. It has become the place to shop for unique home furnishings and gifts. In 2001, she opened Grapevine Café with the desire to create a casual restaurant that would offer creative food choices and feel like home. The ideas kept coming and finally, to complement the two other businesses, Lady Savannah opened its doors. This women’s clothing boutique caters to women of all ages and budgets, with an edge on fashion.
Diane’s contacts at Denmark State Bank are always talking with her about opportunities for cost-savings within her small, local businesses. She credits Denmark State Bank’s timely return phone calls and friendly, personal service as characteristics that make the bank stand-out when compared to other financial institutions. “The ‘bigger’ bank simply could not match the customer service level and competitive rates offered by Denmark State Bank.”
Homestead Decor, Grapevine Café and Lady Savannah are all located in Bellevue, Wisconsin.
AmericollectRead MoreRead Less
Ask the CEO of Americollect, Kenlyn T. Gretz about what it’s like to own a successful small business and he’ll give you a somewhat unexpected answer. “You get a lot done by being nice to people,” said Kenlyn, “and when your employees like coming to work, that translates to your customers.”
In a business that’s not known for being “nice,” Americollect is changing that perception — and their success shows it. When Kenlyn purchased the collections company in 1999 there were only 12 employees. Today they have 225 people at their office in Manitowoc, are a nationally licensed collections business and report about $13 million in annual sales.
In response to this success, Americollect is in the process of building a 20,000 square foot addition, with the help of Denmark State Bank. “I was pleasantly surprised at how competitive Denmark State Bank’s rates were compared to the very large banks that are out there,” stated Kenlyn. “That advantage, along with the fact that they are a local bank made it a good decision for us.“
With more than 100 years of banking experience, Denmark State Bank brings a strong legacy of competitive pricing and personal, dedicated service to their customers in Northeast Wisconsin.
Kenlyn also points out that the decision-makers at Denmark State Bank understand small business in a way that the bigger banks don’t. “With a business that’s (relatively) small and constantly changing and growing, we need flexibility, ”said Kenlyn. “And Mark (Hoefs) has given us the help and service we need, when we’ve needed it — he checks in with us on a regular basis to be sure our needs are being met.”
Americollect is headquartered in Manitowoc, Wisconsin, and has been ranked as one of the best places to work in collections for six consecutive years.
Packerland GlassRead MoreRead Less
Denmark State Bank has been with owners Pete and his brother Mike the whole way. “Denmark State Bank has always had the ability to look at our situation, and assess what’s going to work best for our business,” said Pete. “They ask good questions, and look outside the box instead of just saying ‘yes’ or ‘no’. Denmark State Bank has always stood behind us and given us what we deserved, even during the tough times in our business.”
The loyal relationship between Packerland Glass and Denmark State Bank started in 1998. At that time, Pete Borremans wasn’t in a position to buy a small business. He was going through a divorce and “no one would touch me,” for financing. Thankfully his father Peter, Sr. introduced him to his friends at Denmark State Bank. “They believed in me and gave me the opportunity to purchase Packerland Glass.”
The decision was a good one. For more than 40 years, Packerland Glass has helped thousands of commercial and residential clients in Northeast Wisconsin with their glass needs.
Packerland Glass is located in Ashwaubenon, Wisconsin.
Krepline Custom HarvestingRead MoreRead Less
“Spring to fall, we do it all,” is the motto for Krepline Custom Harvesting, a full service custom harvester serving farmers in Manitowoc and Calumet counties.
Owned by Larry Krepline and his son, Mike, Kreplines is available to farmers throughout the year. They plant corn, beans and alfalfa and work to harvest more than 12,000 acres of corn silage each year. In addition, they can do custom bagging with a self-propelled bagger, square baling, combining, manure hauling and fall tillage. They literally do it all.
The Kreplines have been customers of Denmark State Bank starting with Larry’s father. Once Larry started running the business, he decided that Denmark State Bank provided them with the best service and sound advice. “Denmark State Bank’s agribusiness bankers understand farmers and their farming needs,” says Larry. “They are very knowledgeable.”
Kreplines also cash crop about 1,500 acres of land including corn, soybeans, wheat, alfalfa, and own a small herd of 75 cows. They are located in Reedsville, Wisconsin.
Vander Kinter Farms, LLCRead MoreRead Less
The Vander Kinter family knows what it means to run a successful family business. Wallace Vander Kinter started as a dairy farmer, where he taught his sons Wayne, Clyde and Glen how to run the business. Today, Wayne’s sons Luke, Brian and Nick and Luke’s wife Katherine are also involved with their custom harvesting business and work with farmers throughout northeast Wisconsin, including Rosendale Dairy, the largest farm in the state.
The Vander Kinters do custom harvesting for their local customers from start to finish. They also cash grain farm and run about 1000 acres of land where they plant, grow and harvest everything themselves.
The relationship with Denmark State Bank dates back to when Wallace and Joyce began as customers, and has continued ever since. Once the custom harvesting business started, the sons and grandsons knew that their local, community bank would help them be successful.
“We’ve worked with Jack (Olsen) for all of our needs at the bank,” said Katherine Vander Kinter, “he’s down-to-earth, talks things through and really understands our business. When we say we need money for a new chopper, they know we don’t mean a new onion chopper.” Denmark State Bank has always been interested in their business. “They make banking easy,” says Katherine. “Since Denmark State Bank is a local bank, when we ask for a loan, they know exactly where we’ll be using the money.”
Vander Kinter Farms is located in Bellevue, Wisconsin.
Precision Paper ConvertersRead MoreRead Less
As the president of a niche product manufacturing company, Jeff Anderson knows the importance of responsiveness. Precision Paper Converters (PPC), located in Kaukauna, is the only company in North America with a focus on producing facial tissues and related dry wipes. Their small size and category focus allow them to respond quickly according to customer requirements.
When planning for their most recent expansion, Denmark State Bank’s responsiveness was critical when assessing which financial institution would best partner with PPC. “It was a natural fit [with Denmark State Bank] in terms of size and responsiveness, and they truly listened to and responded to our needs,” said Jeff. “Denmark State Bank’s local decision-making ability was another positive factor. If we have questions or additional requests, we know who to talk too.”
Established in 1991, and under current ownership since 2002, PPC is the only company in North America to focus on facial tissue production, and are experts in producing similar interfolded products, like lens wipes and delicate task wipes. In addition, PPC has a significant presence in healthcare producing tissue sizes specific to the needs of the healthcare industry.
Working with local businesses and developing relationships with key customers and vendors is high priority for PPC. As a local community bank, the partnership with Denmark State Bank allows for immediate, face-to-face communication and the ability to assess and discuss ideas and best options in real-time. “We’re off to a great start,” said Jeff. “Denmark State Bank understands our business, the ‘ins-and-outs’ of our transactions and are contributing to our success.”
Precision Paper Converters is located in Kaukauna, Wisconsin. Their “Sniffles” brand facial tissue is available for purchase in all local Festival Foods stores.
Alternative Animal BeddingRead MoreRead Less
Supporting local farmers with a cost effective bedding solution is at the core of Lynn and Cindi Heemeyer’s business, Alternative Animal Bedding. “Agriculture is really astounding,” said Cindi. “There are so many local farmers willing to do unique and different things to keep their farms successful, and we’re proud to be a part of that.”
Alternative Animal Bedding provides bedding to farmers using a mix of recyclable products, including short paper fiber and lime kiln dust. Through their unique partnerships with local businesses, and relatively simple way of mixing product, the resulting bedding is a consistent, long-lasting, reliable product for farmers to use.
Their business began in 2010 after a tour of the Fox River Fiber Plant where their daughter interned. In 2012, the couple moved to the Denmark area as business grew. To keep up with demand, the Heemeyer’s approached Denmark State Bank about financing options to purchase and install new equipment. The bank’s expertise in the local agricultural community tied in perfectly with Lynn and Cindi’s desire to serve local farmers, and a successful partnership was established.
The Heemeyer’s business continues to grow, consistently hauling 65-70 loads of bedding each week. Their daughter Jess, became part of the team in March of 2015, forgoing an “office job” to become a part of the family business. “We knew we would find that connection in a community bank,” said Cindi. “Everyone we speak to is always ready to help, and so gracious whether we are in the office, or speaking on the phone.” This local connection to community is inherent in the way Lynn and Cindi interact and support the community. “Denmark State Bank has been so good to us – we’re very lucky.”
The Caldwell Family and Eye & Vision ClinicsRead MoreRead Less
From the beginning, Robin knew the significance of working with a local, community bank. More than 35 years ago, Robin, her husband Jon and his partner David Dufek began the Eye and Vision Clinics, located in De Pere and Luxemburg. Starting a brand new business isn’t easy, and the three of them worked hard to establish themselves in the local communities. “Your banker is the most important person when you’re starting a business,” said Robin. And so began the partnership with Denmark State Bank. Robin hasn’t looked back since.
As their business grew, so did the personal relationships between the bank and the business. “The bank helped with our first mortgage, and again when we decided to build our dream home,” said Robin. Their two children and families are also customers of the bank. “Denmark State Bank helped with my son’s first car loan, and my daughter and her husband’s first mortgage.” At times, the bank would anticipate the needs of her business before she even realized it. “I truly feel that they [the bank] always have my best interests in mind.”
When Robin’s husband passed away six years ago, the staff of the bank was there to help work through the financial changes/challenges, including refinancing her house. “Denmark State Bank has made it as easy as they can for me, jumping through hoops so I don’t have too.” Robin believes that Denmark State Bank’s commitment to stay a local, community bank is mirrored in their attention to detail and customer support. “Because of the relationship we have with Denmark State Bank, we were successful. Not only with our business, but personally too.”
Zabel MonumentsRead MoreRead Less
When Eric Zabel had the opportunity to purchase the family business, Zabel Monuments, from his father two years ago, the thought of taking on the inherent financial challenge was a bit intimidating; he also knew that Denmark State Bank would help him through. When Eric’s father retired and Eric looked to secure financing for the purchase, he called his friend, Denmark State Bank president Scot Thompson. Eric and Scot worked together to secure the appropriate financing for the business purchase, keeping the family business in the Zabel family.
Eric has grown up in the business, sweeping floors, helping his Dad and experiencing all aspects of designing, engraving and personalizing stone monuments. Zabel Monuments provides the best quality and workmanship for each and every custom cemetery memorial they produce; designing, engraving and personalizing based on the individual desires of every family.
Denmark State Bank continues to support Eric’s success, including a recent expansion into the Green Bay market. “They’ve worked with me on purchasing property and additional businesses,” said Eric. “Were it not for their creativity, we wouldn’t be in the position we are today.”
Eric enjoys the warm greeting and personal touch experienced with everyone he comes in contact with at the bank. “I like that Scot’s office is right there when you walk into the bank, within reach of every customer,” said Eric. Anytime he stops in, calls or emails the bank with questions, he receives a prompt response. “Community banking allows for that face-to-face conversation when you need it; not just over the phone.”
For the owner of this local business, Denmark State Bank’s welcoming staff and local connection makes all the difference.
Eric, his wife and their three children live in Manitowoc.