Company History

The company goals are to deliver exceptional customer service along with the most reliable and innovative products and solutions to help our customers be more successful. With these goals in mind, Wilson Tool International has manufacturing facilities and sales channels around the world to serve our thousands of global customers.

We are known for our customized tooling solutions designed to help customers resolve their most challenging fabrication issues worldwide. Wilson Tool products can be found in Africa, Asia-Pacific, Europe, the Middle East, North America and South America.

Wilson Tool History

Wilson Tool employees holding banner

Wilson Tool International, the largest independent manufacturer of tooling systems for the bending, punching, stamping and tableting industries celebrated 55 years in business in 2021.

When Ken and Ruth Wilson opened The Wilson Tool Company in a basement shop in St. Paul, Minnesota, they never imagined that fifty years later, Wilson Tool would become an international leader in tooling solutions for fabricators and manufacturers around the world. “Starting your own business was just what people did back then,” Ken recalled.

Ken Wilson received his first patent in 1969 and decades of growth and expansion followed. The basement shop moved to White Bear Lake, Minnesota and now houses 350,000 square feet of manufacturing space, research & design, engineering, marketing, and an international sales desk with custom design expertise.

Through numerous acquisitions and expansions, Wilson Tool grew to include offices or plants in Canada, Mexico, Brazil, England, Denmark, Germany, France and Italy. Innovation naturally came in tandem with business expansion. From the first computer grinder patented before the company experienced significant growth, Wilson Tool went on to receive patents for the first “shimless” punch assembly; the first punch press tooling with interchangeable punch tips; forming tools that rolled on, rather than penetrated the sheet; and many, many others. To date, the company has been granted 91 patents.

Wilson Tool’s growth allowed the company to become a leader in industry progress, including lean manufacturing processes and application training. Emerging as a thought leader in the industry, lean seminars, webinars, training opportunities, and industry forums gave Wilson Tool the opportunity to connect in meaningful ways with customers.

Dedicated to delivering “exceptional customer service, along with the most reliable and innovative products and solutions so our customers can be more successful,” Ken and Ruth Wilson maintain that customer relationships and the company’s employees are essential elements to Wilson Tool’s success. “Although we ultimately owe our success to our customers, we could not have become the world’s largest independent tooling manufacturer without the commitment of dedicated Wilson Tool employees,” Ken Wilson wrote when celebrating the company’s 30th anniversary. “I am very proud of the fact that Wilson Tool is a family-oriented company. Each individual is a member of the ‘family’ and deserves to be treated with the same dignity and respect afforded our customers.”

We have always placed a premium on innovation and growth. For us, the status quo holds no status. In 2018 we expanded Wilson Tool International with the purchase of the tablet press tooling division of Thomas Engineering Inc. This addition expanded Wilson Tool’s manufacturing expertise, service capability, and knowledge of the tablet compression industry.

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