Kinze Manufacturing started in 1965 when Jon Kinzenbaw, a 21-year old farm boy from Victor, Iowa, opened a welding shop. After struggling for almost a decade, Kinzenbaw would make his mark by developing products that enabled farmers to increase efficiency and cover more acres in less time during both planting and harvesting. His innovative planter design leapfrogged the rest of the industry and propelled the company to one of the largest, privately held agricultural equipment manufacturers in North America. Today, the company is led by his daughter, Susie Veatch, though Jon is regularly seen on the shop floor. The company’s official start began in late 1965 when Kinzenbaw returned home after serving in the U.S. Army. “I talked about opening a hardware store,” he remembers. “But my real expertise was to look at something and fix it, so I changed the direction of the business to a welding and repair shop and bought an old building for $2,000. “We started in October 1965 getting the building ready for a mid-December opening,” Kinzenbaw recalls, adding that he’d borrowed $3,500 for tools and equipment. “A fellow broke a loader frame and begged me to fix it because he needed it for c...