August 4, 2023
The boards of directors of All West/Select Sires, COBA/Select Sires, Select Sires MidAmerica, and Minnesota/Select Sires announced today that they have voted unanimously to merge as one cooperative representing the Select Sires federation in 25 U.S. states and the country of Mexico. The new cooperative, Select Sires Member Cooperative (SSMC), will begin as of October 1, 2023.
“As a supporter of cooperatives, my goal was to help create something that would allow us to always remain a member-owned cooperative. We would be nothing without our members,” said Brett Gibbons, president of Select Sires MidAmerica. “This merger allows us to do just that, and from the beginning it was evident that all of us wanted the same thing. This process was successful because of the unity shared amongst co-ops and more importantly, the general managers.”
The board-led process has been intentional to create a cooperative that can serve dairy and beef producers well into the future. The boards of these four cooperatives feel that this is the logical next step in an ever-evolving industry to continue to operate as a full-service A.I. cooperative.
“We have four cooperatives that are in a strong financial position and have chosen to take a very proactive course to ensure that our members will continue to receive the top-level products and services that they've always enjoyed,” said Chad Steinberger, COBA/Select Sires president.
The goal of SSMC remains aligned with the current goal of each of these cooperatives, to serve all members-owners equitably and efficiently while providing the outstanding genetics and services of Select Sires.
Per the agreement and plan of merger, the initial executive board of directors has been formed from the officers of the four cooperatives. Their first order of business was to select a chief executive officer to lead the cooperative, and Chris Sigurdson, current general manager of COBA/Select Sires and Minnesota/Select Sires, was selected.
“There is so much synergy between the boards and Chris Sigurdson, as well as fellow current general managers, Devin Albrecht and Rory White. This has been true ever since we began this process,” said Jerry Lanting, All West/Select Sires president. “We, as chairmen of each cooperative, have had in-depth discussions with all of them, and can confirm that they are excited to work together to make the cooperative even better for the members.”
After significant evaluation of the best business environment to incorporate the new cooperative, the decision was made for the headquarters office to be in Columbus, Ohio. The office in Logan, Utah will serve as a joint operational headquarters. All other present locations will remain operational at this time.
Farmer-owners can expect to continue receiving industry-leading genetics and quality service from the passionate team who serves them. On October 1, SSMC will consist of over 300 employees serving over 10,000 valued cooperative members. Among the many benefits of merging as one, SSMC will remain a farmer-owned-and-controlled cooperative led by fellow producers.
“I’m extremely excited about the future and the vision of the four cooperatives working together as one. It has been a lot of hard work, but all parties involved have worked so well together and created an awesome new entity,” said Jim Barthel, Minnesota/Select Sires president. “I am looking forward to the success of SSMC for its members and employees alike.”
The governance structure of SSMC has already been carefully determined in detail. The board members and employees of these four cooperatives are now working together diligently to create the business structure of this new cooperative. Together, SSMC will serve member-owners as one cooperative, “For The Members: By The Members.”
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