Locking in on Detention Hardware Success

By CN Staff

SteelCell Exec Shares Insights on Midwest Portland Acquisition

BALDWIN, Ga.—CN touched based recently with Doug Bruhns, Vice President of Business Development for SteelCell of Baldwin, Ga. Bruhns shared some key details on the company’s recent purchase of Midwest Portland to enhance SteelCell’s product offering with a detention hardware product line.

CN: Why did SteelCell want to be in the lock business?

SteelCell is looking to diversify our current business and expand our product portfolio to existing customers in the justice market. Adding detention locks into our product portfolio fits well with our current product offering. Projected growth and recent industry consolidation, the detention market needed other viable options to keep up with demand and service the market.

CN: What company did SteelCell Purchase?

SteelCell acquired the assets of Midwest Portland, which was a combination of Midwest Hardware, Portland Hardware and Innovative Detention systems.  This included all the design and testing of their mechanical, electromechanical, sliding door and other hardware products.  Most recently Midwest Portland was owned by a company that was focused on other end markets and not the justice business.   They were not active in pursuing the new construction projects, being listed in specifications or attending industry events.

CN: What products are you going to provide?

The goal is to provide locks and slider devices to detention equipment contractors across the country that focus on new construction and retrofit applications. The current focus is to increase output and revive the existing product line, with a renewed focus on customer service, quality and becoming a new resource for the Justice industry.

CN: Where are you going to manufacture locks?

SteelCell has relocated production from the Midwest to our existing factory in Baldwin, GA.  SteelCell is currently expanding our campus with 110,000 sq. ft of new manufacturing and office space, increasing our fabrication capabilities and storage to support increasing demand for the modular business.  With these ongoing expansions for the modular business, Steelcell has the capacity and increased capabilities to support the production volume required for a growing lock business and other potential growth markets.  Steelcell is also expanding our talent and existing engineering team to continue to provide a high level of service and innovation to the market.

CN: What makes your lock product line unique?

Our lock line is a template compatible with many of the major existing brands in the marketplace, so we can provide retrofit solutions and new products.  Our lock line has been fully tested and has a proven and reliable mechanical function to supply safe and secure detention products to the industry.