Wm. Nobbe and Co., Inc was founded in 1907 by brothers William and Henry Nobbe. At the time the business sold several product types with buggies being the main revenue producer. As technology changed their business offerings changed with it bringing John Deere Farm Machinery and Chevrolet automobiles to the forefront in the 1920's.
Through the years the business grew to include more family members including Henry's two sons Edward and Robert. These two grew the business into a mainstay in the Waterloo community. It was also during this time period of 1925, that the decision was made to split the two major product lines into two separate businesses. William's family took the Chevrolet automobiles, while Edward and Robert remained with John Deere and the agricultural business.
The business continued with stable and steady growth through the years and welcomed Tom and Brian Nobbe (Sons of Edward and Robert, respectively) in the mid 70's. During the '70s and '80s the business was blessed by favorable market conditions and innovations in agriculture which allowed the business to continue flourish.
In 1989 Tom and Brian Nobbe became majority stock holders when they purchased the business from their fathers. This transition would lead to the most rapid growth that the company had seen since its inception.
Tom and Brian continued to build a very strong business out of the Waterloo location, but had their eyes open for opportunities that may present themselves outside of the Waterloo area.
That opportunity came in 1998 when Zachies Equipment in Steeleville, IL became available for purchase. This was a great opportunity for expansion for the single store operation. Steeleville at the time was a struggling location that provided excellent growth opportunity in addition to the close proximity to the parent location.
The success of this new location and the desire within Tom and Brian to continue to grow the business led them to reopen the John Deere dealership in Jackson, MO in 2002. This location had closed its door two years previous for a lack of business, but as Tom and Brian visited the area they found a very strong desire in the community to have this type of business back. The gamble paid off with the Jackson location rivaling the Waterloo location in sales volume.
Hoping to strike gold again the company reopened a Deere location in the Godfrey/Alton area in 2005 marking their first attempt at a lawn and garden only store.
The Alton location opened the doors for the next acquisition in Jerseyville, IL in 2006. This location and the Alton store would fall under a new entity known as Wm. Nobbe North, LLC. It was also at this time that Tom's sons, Jared and Brad bought in as minority stake holders in the parent company of Wm. Nobbe and Co., Inc.
On March 11, 2006, while in the middle of the process acquiring the Jerseyville location, a tornado ripped through the Steeleville location which completely destroyed the main building. Only two buildings survived which quickly turned into a temporary parts and service building. A construction trailer was brought in to serve as temporary offices. After conducting business from their temporary arrangements for several months, they moved into their new 30,000 sq. ft. facility in December 2006.
In February 2007 Wm. Nobbe & Co., Inc. purchased Mid-America Power Equipment in Cape Girardeau, MO. That dealership was about 5 miles away from the Jackson location and had plans to sell out. This was a good opportunity to expand the Lawn & Garden Service, Parts and Sales by making this purchase happen. Indeed the Cape store was successful which would lead to future growth for the company.
The decision was made into 2007 to combine the Alton and Jerseyville facilities into one centralized location which would give the business the facilities required to serve the surrounding community. In this process, the two companies were merged into one. Wm. Nobbe North, LLC was eliminated and joined into Wm. Nobbe & Co., Inc. on July 1, 2008. The new Jerseyville facility was built on 20 acres 1 ½ miles South of Jerseyville at Rt. 67 & Crystal Lake Road. The new facility is a 34,000 sq. ft. “State of the Art Facility” and is a concrete-tilt up structure. It was completed in October 2008 and will allow for expansion and growth in that area.
Wm. Nobbe & Co., Inc.’s lease at the Jackson store expired in May of 2009 and they had always envisioned merging with the Cape Girardeau facility into a new larger facility. This vision became a reality in December of 2009 when their new 38,000 sq. ft. facility opened on East Outer Road North in Scott City, MO. The concrete-tilt up structure sits just off I-55 exit 91 on 10.98 acres of property. The property offers us extremely great visibility and access to and from the store.
October 1, 2011, marked the takeover of two more dealership locations. The Ste. Genevieve and Farmington, Missouri locations officially began operating under the Wm. Nobbe & Co., Inc. name after many years of serving as another well known John Deere dealership. These two areas serve as well established agriculture and turf communitities.
Then on March 26, 2012, the Nobbe tradition of growing strong was introduced to the St. Peters, Missouri community. The seventh dealership location opened its door for business. The St. Peters dealership is located directly across from MidRivers Mall and offers a full line of Turf Equipment, Compact Tractors (1000 - 5000 Series), Gehl Mini-Excavating Equipment, Parts, OnSite and Shop Service, John Deere Toys and Merchandise and the newest product line to the John Deere family, Honda Power Equipment.
The Nobbe’s will continue to be open minded to other opportunities for future growth but the primary reason will be to assure us long term stability to be able to continue to provide our customers with the Ultimate Customer Experience. As we grow, we always keep the customer in mind because we are “People Dedicated To Making Your Life Better.”
Left to Right: Jared Nobbe, Tom Nobbe, Ed Nobbe, Bob Nobbe, Brian Nobbe, and Brad Nobbe