Fewer than 40 companies from our original Star Tribune 100 list in 1992 are still on the 25th edition this year. Some have gone out of business, some have moved out of state, some have been taken private, but most of those gone have been acquired by other companies.
We stand to lose two more companies from that inaugural list if their respective billion-dollar deals, announced earlier this year, close in the next year as expected.
No. 16 St. Jude Medical (48th largest by revenue on the first Star Tribune 100 list) was founded in 1976 to build a better mechanical heart valve. In the 40 years since, it has built a portfolio of medical devices, including cardiac rhythm management products and cardiac catheters.
St. Jude has been the acquirer in many deals throughout its history, including more than two dozen in the last 10 years that are worth a combined $6.6 billion. The company ended 2015 with annual revenue of $5.5 billion, up from the $209 million on the first list 25 years ago.
It also had been rumored to be acquired dozens more times in its history. Finally, on April 28, St. Jude announced that it would be acquired by Abbott Laboratories in a deal valued at $30 billion.
No. 19 Valspar (29th largest by revenue on the first Star Tribune 100) has a history that dates to the early 1800s in Cambridge, Mass. Through a succession of mergers and headquarters moves, the company ended up in Minneapolis. The latest deal may take it off the list.
On March 20, Valspar announced that it would become part of Cleveland-based Sherwin-Williams in a deal valued at $11.3 billion. The deal is expected to close early 2017.
Valspar has about 10,500 employees worldwide, including about 600 in Minneapolis. Those include headquarters staff as well as employees in research and development and technology. It is not known how many local employees will be affected by the deal, although severance terms have been announced.
The move to Minneapolis came in 1970 when the company, which then had annual revenue of $27 million, merged with Minnesota Paints Inc., a $24 million company. In the decades to follow, more acquisitions established Valspar as a national and international provider of paints, varnishes and coatings. Valspar says it is the fifth-largest North American manufacturer of paints and coatings.