Gates Corporation, based in Denver, Colorado USA, is a manufacturer of power transmission belts and a manufacturer of fluid power products. The company’s products are used in diverse industrial and automotive applications. The company employs over 14,000 staff and has sales and manufacturing operations in all of the world's major markets, including North and South America, Europe, Asia, Australia, and the Middle East.
On October 1, 1911, Charles Gates Sr. purchased the Colorado Tire and Leather Company located in Denver, Colorado beside the South Platte River. He paid $3,500 for a property that would one day become one of the world's largest manufacturers of power transmission belts and a leader in hydraulic and fluid power products for industrial and automotive products.
Colorado Tire and Leather Company made a single product, the Durable Tread, a steel-studded band of leather that motorists attached to tires to extend their mileage. In 1917, the company began phasing out leather in favor of rubber and Charles Gates changed its name to the International Rubber Company.
That same year, John Gates, Charles's brother, developed a belt made of rubber and woven threading called a V-belt, due to its shape. It replaced the hemp and rope belt used on automobiles and industrial machinery at the time, and was a model for the common serpentine belt. The belt's success propelled the company to become the largest manufacturer of V-belts, a title it still holds.
In 1919, the International Rubber Company changed its name to the Gates Rubber Company. Gates continued its expansion across the United States, opening more factories and hiring thousands of people. Then, in 1954, its first international manufacturing facility was built in Brantford, Ontario, Canada. Expansion to other countries followed. In 1958, the company opened Gates Rubber de Mexico. In 1963, Gates built a belt and hose plant in Erembodegem, Belgium, the first of many European facilities.
In the 1980s, Gates expansion continued when the company acquired the Uniroyal Power Transmission Company and became the world's largest synchronous/timing belt manufacturer, firmly establishing its growth path in the Asia-Pacific region.
In 1996, the company was acquired by the British-based engineering firm, Tomkins plc, ending 85 years of family ownership. In 2003, Gates changed its name to The Gates Corporation, a move reflecting the company's expanding range of industrial brands, product lines, and customers.
In Dumfries, Gates Power Transmission has approximately 400 employees.
Gates Power Transmission produces Synchronous Timing Belts for both the Automotive and Industrial Markets.
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