The year was 1946. Entrepreneurs from Wall Street to Hollywood could finally turn their resources and ingenuity toward the visions and aspirations that many of them had put on hold during the Second World War. One of those entrepreneurs was John Vette, Jr., a young man who in 1946 bought a transformer company located in Glenview, Illinois. SNC (the company was named after its original owner, Swain Nelson), quickly stabilized under Mr.Vette’s guidance and began to make a name for itself by building transformers for the television and radio industries.
In 1948 Mr. Vette moved the company to Oshkosh, Wisconsin where he and his family already owned the land and buildings needed for expansion. A converted chicken coop and sheep barn was home to the new manufacturing plant, and a dedicated crew of SNC employees built transformers at the farm for nearly 20 years.
It was during those first two decades of operation that SNC cemented its relationships with several key customers. This foundation allowed SNC to seek out broader markets and continue to increase business. In 1966 Mr. Vette broke ground on a larger facility at the company’s present location on Waukau Avenue, just a few miles up the road from the farm.
SNC Joins the Telecom World
In 1970 an inventive engineer working for Wisconsin Telephone approached SNC with a product he had an idea for that might reduce ac-induced noise problems on copper telephone lines. His name was Bob Stoneman and he was ordered by none other than the then-president of Wisconsin Telephone to fix the noise problem on the president's phone...or else.
Well, Bob Stoneman was no fool - and he also needed his job. Legend has it he went home that night, "borrowed" a transformer from his kids' train set and unwound the wire. He then proceeded to strip 500 feet of telephone wire by hand and hand-wound the transformer with the bare telephone wire. To make a long story short, the transformer was cut into the telephone circuit and it worked like a charm. The president had a quiet phone, Stoneman kept his job and SNC had a new product.
Soon after, SNC began building INTs or Induction Neutralizing Transformers, for other telcos and the product line grew into what is now a broad range of products that are in one form or another offshoots of that original "train transformer" INT. These products are marketed and sold throughout the United States and in more than 30 countries abroad.
From Humble Beginnings To 21st Century Business Leader
Still firmly planted in this progressive Midwestern community, and still changing with the times, SNC has reached far beyond those humble beginnings. In 1992 SNC opened its first “offshore” production facility in Cd. Acuña, Mexico. In 2007, SNC opened a production facility in Jiangsu Province, Changzhou, China.
As we move forward in the 21st century, SNC finds itself a leader in the transformer manufacturing industry and a nationally recognized source for high voltage telecommunication protection equipment. SNC continues to focus on the core business practices that were the foundation of those early years – to provide customers with nothing less than the finest product quality and customer service every single day.