We're going to need a bigger trunk.

Back in 1961, when J.E. (Jim) Braas began selling products out of the trunk of his Buick, he likely could not have imagined that his fledgling company would one day grow to be a leading distributor of industrial automation products and services, employing 180 people spread across 14 states, and selling online to all 50 states and beyond (what’s online?).

Then again, perhaps few were as persistent as J.E. when it came to understanding the importance of putting customers first.  That’s exactly what Braas Company has been doing since J.E. first popped open his trunk and said, “I’ll bet you could use this”, except now we do it with over 100 suppliers.

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2016

BRAAS company is acquired by Motion Industries 

2016

The Olympic Games come to South America, with Rio de Janeiro as the host city.

2015

BRAAS launches Instrumentation and Control Initiative

2015

Seattle Seahawks win then immediately lose Superbowl 49. New England Patriots crowned champions.

2014

Rosetta spacecraft becomes the first to land on a comet

2012

Braas achieves 100% ESOP

2012

Michel Phelps becomes winningest athlete in Olympic history with 22 medals (18 Gold)

2011

Braas purchases SiCRON

2012

Braas becomes 2nd largest SMC Distributor in US

2008

Pop icon Michael Jackson dies.

2008

US Housing bubble bursts amid financial crisis.

2006

Braas establishes sales branch in IA/NE

2006

Pluto gets demoted to a planetoid, thus sparking a new “when I was your age…” adage

2005

Braas opens Chicago Branch Office

2004

Braas recognized as world’s largest DVT Distributor

2004

NASA Rovers, Opportunity and Spirit, begin exploration of Mars (or an Orlando movie studio depending on what you believe).

2004

The social networking website Facebook was launched

2002

Braas signs as SMC distributor in all locations

2001

September 11th terrorist attacks and the beginning of the “War on Terror”

2000

Braas signs Denso Robotics, becoming one of the first industrial distributors to handle robotics

2000

Y2K fails to materialize, leading to surplus of used generators on Craigslist

1999

Braas purchases Kershaw Automation in Oldsmar, FL (later to become Braas FL)

1999

Craigslist is founded

1999

The company surpasses $40M

1995

Braas expands into Machine Vision with Dickerson Vision Technologies (later to become DVT).

1995

Wisława Szymborska wins the Nobel Prize for Literature. Read it?

1994

Braas receives ISO 9002 certification – and goes on to document why we don’t need it

1993

Braas surpasses $20M in sales

1993

The internet expands with a little something called the World Wide Web

1992

Braas installs 2nd and current ERP System

1990

Braas opens Appleton WI office

1990

The 1st photograph of entire solar system is taken by Voyager 1

1988-89

The Berlin Wall falls and the USSR disappears. Americans learn of numerous “-stans” and another “Georgia”

1987

Braas celebrates their first $1M sales month in February

1987

Braas exceeds $10m in sales, forms the “Value Add” department, and installs their first voicemail system.

1987

Wayne Gretzky scores the 1,500th NHL goal

1986

Jim Braas creates the ESOP and retires, selling the company to his employees

1986

The company gets their first fax machine

1984

Braas opens Milwaukee Branch w/ 6 employees

1983

Braas moves on to IBM System 36 “ERP” Accounting System with 2, count ‘em, 2 processors (4MHz & 1MHz)

1983

Chrysler unveils two minivans, the Dodge Caravan and Plymouth Voyager, to the public

1980

Braas signs on as Omron distributor selling PLCs, Sensors and Temperature Controllers

1980

John Lennon is assassinated

1979

Revolution in Iran and the beginning of the hostage crisis.

1978

Revolution in Iran and the beginning of the hostage crisis.

1977

Apple Computer Inc. is incorporated

1975

Microsoft founded

1974

Braas launches Motion Control Division with Superior Electric and hires their first Applications Engineer. The company also surpasses $2M in sales.

1974

First planet Mercury flyby (Mariner 10)

1973

President Nixon resigns over Watergate

1969

Apollo 11: Americans Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin land on the moon

1969

Braas surpasses $1M in sales

1965

Bob Dylan releases “Like a Rolling Stone”

1962

Mariner 2 does the first planetary flyby (Venus)

1961

JE Braas Company is founded by Jim Braas selling Power Transmission & Pneumatic Equipment