Partners in Growth

by | Aug 20, 2021 | Investor Features | 0 comments

Driven by the mission “to create value for all stakeholders,” Granite Partners’ commitment to shared value growth is a good introduction to the unique, local, private investment company based here in St. Cloud.

On a Rock-Solid Foundation

Granite Partners is in its 20th year of operation, and its roots run deep in Central Minnesota’s history of innovation and business. The firm launched in 2002 with initial investments from 12 founding families, all with generational ties to businesses in St. Cloud and the surrounding area. The shared values and support of those earliest investors fueled the firm as it was getting started and remains a source of ongoing inspiration, connection, and knowledge.

Granite Partners Early Investors

Investing in Minnesota Companies

Today, 10 business-to-business companies are at the heart of Granite. Those companies—the Granite Companies—are all headquartered in Minnesota and positioned for growth. Three of those companies are based in the St. Cloud area: DeZURIK, GeoComm, and Microbiologics. DeZURIK, headquartered in Sartell, is the global leader in valve technologies for water and wastewater treatment.

Granite Partners Image 06

GeoComm, in St. Cloud, is a leading provider of geographic information and communication systems to emergency 911 call centers throughout the United States. Microbiologics, also based in St. Cloud, provides ready-to-use reference strains for microbiological quality control testing that are used throughout the world. Learn more about all of the Granite Companies.

Rick Bauerly is Founder & CEO of Granite Partners. “We think of Granite as something larger than the investment company and deeper than the individual platform companies. We are offering long-term support to the Granite Companies by growing a business ecosystem around them.” Granite Partners strives to deliver the companies a pool of resources along with the ability to network and collaborate with peer companies, because, as Bauerly notes, “the more we lower cost and infrastructure barriers, the more we enable innovation and growth.”

A Wellspring of Opportunity

A focus on wellbeing, along with a strong commitment to long-term stability, attracts talented people.

Bauerly describes the company’s central focus on wellbeing, saying, “In short, the vision statement and desired, future end state for Granite Partners is ‘world-class wellbeing.’ We nurture a culture of and conversations about wellbeing. We design our environment to support wellbeing. We measure and improve wellbeing over time.”

Granite Partners and the Granite Companies structure comprehensive employee benefits that emphasize and encourage wellbeing, whether that is physical, financial, career, social, or community wellbeing. In growing organizations, there are ample opportunities for personal and professional growth as well.

Granite Partners - Geocom

Building on History, Preserving Legacy

Granite Partners is unique in the world of investment firms because it has a buy-to-hold investment strategy. “We aren’t interested in buying to sell, we are interested in partnering with companies for the long term. Effective company growth takes time, and long-term investments are the best way to create value, and the best way to create value for all,” Bauerly added.

The firm seeks out retiring Minnesota business owners who share the same values. “It’s important to partner with the right companies and the right entrepreneurs, and when we find them we are flexible in the transition we offer. Many retirees want to stay connected to the business that has been such a strong thread in their lives, and they want to preserve the company’s legacy and protect their employees’ jobs. We want those same things.” As a result, Granite is a compelling choice. Unlike selling to traditional private equity firms or corporate consolidators, Granite Partners offers owners flexibility and a commitment to company legacy and community.

“Having a long-term mindset is important for overall sustainability, and it has the additional benefit in that it draws people in.”

Growing Companies, Enhancing Communities

Granite Partners Image 01When asked about why it makes sense for Granite Partners to support St. Cloud Shines, Bauerly said, “We support St. Cloud Shines and the Greater St. Cloud Development Corporation (GSDC) because we support efforts to promote and strengthen the community.” Supporting the community is in the Granite Partners’ tagline: growing companies, enhancing communities.

He also described how St. Cloud Shines can help in recruiting. “The website is helpful because it introduces St. Cloud and the local community to new prospects in an accessible, effective, and positive way. This area really is a refreshing alternative to the ultra-urban or ultra-rural, and St. Cloud Shines puts a spotlight on the benefits of this area and tells the stories of Central Minnesotans.

“Businesses need strong communities to thrive. We know that our business growth benefits the community in the quality jobs we provide and in the economic ripple effect those jobs create. But we also know that having a strong local community is important to each of the Granite Companies and each of the companies’ locations.”

Learn more about Granite Partners and the Granite Companies at

Granite Partners Partner Logos

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