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Omaha Magazine

From the Editor: Heritage Businesses 2020

Jul 22, 2020 08:38AM ● By Daisy Hutzell-Rodman
managing editor Daisy Hutzell-Rodman

Photo by Bill Sitzmann

 Businesspeople often desire to leave a legacy of industry—a place of future employment for deserving employees, a respected brand preserved by board members and executives alike.

Many articles in this edition of B2B deal with simply that—legacy. In one feature, Paul Strawhecker, president of Paul J. Strawhecker Inc., is preparing to hand over the reins of his 25-year-old business to his son, Ryan.

Another feature article brings up the subject of innovation. Most companies recognize a need to innovate. Nintendo started as a playing card manufacturer, DuPont started in explosives, and Reikes Manufacturing in Omaha started as a glass recycler, a far cry from the automation company they are today. How Reikes got there is part of the feature on innovation.

President Donald Trump has actively broadened his tariffs on foreign steel. B2B spoke to two steel companies in Omaha about their legacies, their businesses, and how they are doing in 2020.

Our last feature involves banking. According to American Banker, the number of bank charters went from 14,000 in 1985 to 4,938 at the end of 2017. That’s about a 65% drop, but banks have remained local in Nebraska—specifically in Omaha—where many banks are still family-owned. B2B talked with a few to gain insight as to how they have remained independent, and why this is important.

Omaha boasts many legacy businesses, and B2B is proud to bring readers stories of a few of them in this issue.

This letter was in the August/September 2020 issue of B2B.