Headquartered in Osseo, Wisconsin, Global Finishing Solutions (GFS) has an extensive history of providing the aerospace, automotive refinish and industrial finishing industries with exceptional equipment and services, helping businesses maximize productivity and achieve flawless finishes.
With 10 years of national sales experience in the spray booth industry, Jerry Bowe started JBI (Jerry Bowe, Inc.) in Osseo, Wisconsin. The company began producing spray booths and related finishing products for the aerospace, automotive and industrial markets.
JBI saw great success in its early years and quickly outgrew its original headquarters. The company broke ground on a new manufacturing and office facility at 12731 Norway Road, in Osseo, Wisconsin, which is the location of GFS’ current headquarters.
In 1990, JBI had their official ribbon cutting of the new facility at 12731 Norway Road in Osseo, Wisconsin. This facility, built just off of I-94, was one of the most modern and efficient spray booth manufacturing facilities of its time.
Major expansion began on the facility’s new “Building 2,” adding a 48,000-square-foot manufacturing shop to accommodate rapidly increasing production requirements as well as 10,000 square feet of additional office space. The project was completed in 1998.
JBI was acquired by the Curran Group, a family owned and operated holding company since 1918. The Curran Group is based in Illinois with interests in porcelain tile (Crossville Tile), the rail industry (Holland LP) and asphalt contracting (Curran Contracting) sectors.
Global Finishing Solutions remains under the ownership of the Curran Group today, providing the company with additional financial strength and resources.
JBI and the Curran Group expanded its presence in the finishing systems market with the purchase of Blu-Surf Combustion Equipment Company. Blu-Surf was an industry leader in industrial oven technology and systems integration. The acquisition of Blu-Surf led to diversified offerings and burner technology that is still used today in GFS’ industrial burn-off ovens.
JBI merged with Team Blowtherm, a key player in the automotive refinish paint booth market, to create Global Finishing Solutions. The newly formed Global Finishing Solutions then acquired Milbanks Systems, Inc. and their oven panel technology.
The Curran Group purchased all remaining interests held by others in the company and became the sole owners of Global Finishing Solutions, including GFS’ extensive product line from all previous brands and legacy products including Binks, Blu-Surf, DeVilbiss, GFS, JBI, Milbanks (MSI), Team Blowtherm and more.
The Osseo, Wisconsin location became the headquarters for the newly formed Global Finishing Solutions. To meet growing business needs, the company added manufacturing facilities in Osseo and expanded manufacturing into Mexico.
With a new name came new challenges for rebranding the business. Global Finishing Solutions began to take on the abbreviation “GFS,” tweaking the logo to reflect this change.
Global Finishing Solutions grew to include more than 400 employees and operated from multiple locations in North America including: head office and manufacturing in Osseo, Wisconsin; manufacturing and sales in Monterrey, Mexico; and sales and tech support in Irving, Texas and Barrie, Ontario.
Global Finishing Solutions completed a major building expansion and renovation project that added 68,000 square feet of manufacturing space, 33,000 square feet of office space and an on-site training facility. This added space addressed the immediate need for more space as the business expanded, and allowed room for continued growth.
GFS opened the doors of a new state-of-the-art training and product R&D center. The innovative Center for Excellence allows GFS to demonstrate the advantages of its most advanced, game-changing systems while also teaching proper use, tips and safety techniques. The training facility was meticulously designed with full preparation and paint areas to closely mirror a working body shop. The GFS product R&D facility is a space within the building that allows employees to continue to develop new products and improve existing product lines.
In addition to training employees and distributors, GFS invites customers, local paint jobbers, paint companies, collision center consolidators and MSOs, and local body shop associations to the Center for Excellence for product demonstrations and training.
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