Mark Controls Corporation

Strategy in Operating Decisions

Mark Controls Corporation
The University of Chicago - Graduate School of Business
By H. Edward Wrapp

In 1980, net sales for Mark Controls Corporation exceeded $263, 000, 000, a 13% increase over the previous year, coupled with an after-tax earnings increase of 42% to $7,769,000. The principal businesses of the company were energy management systems and services, and valves and flow control products and services. During the decade 1970-80, the compounded rate of growth had been 32% for sales and 33% for net income. A number of acquisitions and divestitures had been completed during this period, the most notable, the merger with Powers Regulator Company in 1978.

Markets and Product Lines

Operating through elevan atonomous untis, the company sold to many end-user markets:

% of 1980 Sales
New building contruction 16
Existing buildings 26
Power generation 12
Petroleum 12
Chemical and other process plants 9
Water systems and general industrial plants 10
Residential and other construction 15

In the energy management systems and services segment, the company designed, manufactured, installed, and serviced a broad line of products that control the temperature, ventilation, energy-use, fire, and security protection in non-residential buildings. For this segment of the company, 1980 sales were approximately $128,000,000, income before taxes $7,300,000 and identifiable assets $61,500,000. Through more than fifty branches throughout the United States and Canada, the company sold and serviced computer-based systems to minimize energy costs for large buildings, and pneumatic control equipment for all sizes of buildings.

Long-term service contracts offered by Mark Controls helped building owners maintain peak operating efficiency and attain longer life for their control systems and related equipment. The company sold to both retrofit and new construction markets. In a related area, the company manufactured and serviced material distribution systems for commercial building, hospitals, and industrial plants.

The other major part of the company, valves and flow control products and services, manufactured and sold a broad line of specialty valves and flow control products to customers in several industries. Company products were highly engineered for distinct market sectors. Sales of these products in 1980 were $113,300,000, income before taxes $9,000,000, and identifiable assets $85,000,000.