In The Beginning
- Founded in January 1981 by Larry Nelson & David Ausen
- Opened the doors in February of 1981 in a rented building in Freeborn MN
- Products carried---Sprayers, tanks, pumps and Raven Electronics
- July 1981 Larry Nelson bought out David Ausen becoming the sole owner of L&D Ag
- 1st Bank note was at 19.75% interest
- 1st year of business employees were Larry Nelson (owner/president), 1 mechanic and 1 bookkeeper
1980's - Just getting started
During the first 5-6 years of business L&D did many “odd” jobs to keep the bills paid. These jobs included general mechanical work, welding, auto body work, and even did some erecting of grain bins.
We designed & installed our 1st planter fertilizer kit in 1985 on a John Deere JD7200 12 row. The customer used this planter fertilizer system till about 2010. It must have worked great!
Our original rental building was so small that we virtually couldn’t get any equipment inside. This lead to our first real estate purchase in 1986. This building in Freeborn was remodeled and featured a 21 feet wide door. (12 feet was all we had before), and warehouse space.
By 1987 L&D had added other product lines such as Hiniker, Yetter, and Top Air. Our fertilizer systems started to gain popularity and our employee count was 5.
1988—The terrible ag economy of the 80’s was beginning to turn around and Larry Nelson married and bought his home.
1990's - growth and expansion
With the Ag economy picking up steam it soon became apparent L&D Ag Inc. needed more space. In the summer of 1990, Larry worked with our local bank and purchased a large building in Hartland. In September of 1990, L&D Ag Service moved to Hartland in what was known as the John Deere building. L&D now had a large shop, large doors to get equipment in and out and room to grow.
In the early 1990’s the employee count went from 5 to 10. It was during this time that we hired our first salesman.
During the 90’s L&D Ag built a lot of specialty and prototype equipment, as well as expanded our fertilizer system business.
L&D Ag saw opportunities in the precision ag field in the early 90’s and became associated with the Ag Leader Company four years later L&D Ag was the world’s largest Ag Leader dealer. Many other contacts with various ag suppliers were made during this time frame.
In the mid 90’s L&D Ag expanded its customer base into the custom applicators, such as co-ops, elevators etc. Also at this time L&D was manufacturing pull type sprayers, 3 point units, saddle tanks and expanding our planter fertilizer kits.
2000's - bigger & better
In the early 2000’s L&D Ag services was at 20 employees. L&D Ag started to add more facilities, to include a welding fabrications shop, paint shop and more rental warehouse space. L&D Ag added more items to the manufacturing list such as LanD Pro sprayers, nurse trailers. We became Trimble dealers and also added more sales staff.
By 2010 L&D Ag was so out of space some type of expansion became necessary. Larry purchased 12 acres on the south side edge of Hartland. On the property construction of 66’x120’ warehouse was made, plus remodeled existing steel buildings. The following year a 62’x64’ addition was made to the “new” warehouse.
In 2011 Larry purchased a 13 acre lot on MN Highway 13 for equipment displays, tank storage and a test track for Auto steer systems. This land was the former Alliant Energy “lay down” site for the wind tower project. The entire lot was covered with crush rock, perfect for our use. The employee count by this time was 28.
With the growth of our electronics department, in 2013, it was decided we need more space for the department. In the fall of 2013 L&D Ag put a 2000 square foot addition to the main building. This expansion gave us a larger shop work stall, a large office area, and a second story parts storage area. In 2013 a large break room was added to the main complex.
the next generation
Spring of 2014 L&D Ag Service Inc moved its electronics service division into its newly constructed area. 2014 into 2015 saw commodity prices drop to the lowest prices in probably 10 years, making proper management an upmost priority.
2015 saw more changes, L&D Ag Service Inc. shipped its 1st multiple order of fertilizer systems to Europe. We are now worldwide! Summers of 2015 Sales offices are remodeled. Probably the biggest news of the year was Larry Nelson’s retirement on July 1, 2015. Wouldn’t you know it the summer I retire we installed central air!