Marathon Equipment Company

Marathon Equipment Company

Marathon Equipment Company, known throughout the world as a leading manufacturer of on-site waste compaction and recycling systems, began one evening in early 1966 as Lawson Acton, refuse hauling contractor, and Jack Wright, a manufacturer of car washes, were talking over the back fence. Acton wasn`t happy with the stationary compactors of the day because they were built like `battleships`, with complicated electrical and hydraulic systems. Only the `wealthy few` could afford them, which automatically left out retailers, shopping malls and smaller industrial companies. Marathon products are represented by team of skilled salespeople and experienced dealers throughout the world.

Company details

P.O. Box 1798 , Vernon , Alabama 35592-1798 USA
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Business Type:
Industry Type:
Recycling Systems
Market Focus:
Globally (various continents)
Year Founded:

Acton envisioned a compactor which utilized material better and more economically priced within the reach of his waiting market.  Combining his idea with Wright's manufacturing expertise, the first RamJet® compactor was born.  It was a struggle for the fledgling company that began producing compactors in its first 'factory', an abandoned service station in 1967. Both resistance from a 'wait and see' market and competitive activity combined to make the first years in Birmingham, Alabama, very difficult.

The obvious advantages of Marathon's more efficient use of materials finally began winning out, and the firm stepped up to a 7,000 sq. ft. plant, then 20,000 sq. ft. and in 1975, to their present facility in Vernon, Alabama. Since 1975, the company has continued its growth by expanding the original 80,000 sq. ft. in Alabama to the present 150,000 sq. ft. In December 1985, Marathon opened its second new plant in Yerington, Nevada, which was expanded in the spring of 1994 from its original 30,000 sq. ft. to 50,000 sq. ft. In November 1989, Marathon opened its third manufacturing plant in Clearfield, Pennsylvania, with 92,000 sq. ft. of floor space.

Privately held for its first 23 years, Marathon was acquired in 1990 by Dover Industries, a diversified industrial manufacturing company and wholly owned subsidiary of Dover Corporation which is publicly traded on the New York Stock Exchange.

Marathon is organized into three business segments aligned with the evolving needs of customers in the global solid waste and recycling industry:

  • The Compaction Solutions group offers durable high-quality compactors, compactions containers, and transfer systems for solid waste handling applications
  • The Recycling Solutions group offers creative solutions for today’s recycling, solid waste, and material handling challenges. Our equipment is designed for a wide variety of recycling and scrap processing operations and includes precision-built auto-tie, two-ram, and manual-tie horizontal and vertical balers, conveyors, and complete MRF systems.
  • The Renewable Energy Solutions group is working with Zero Waste Energy of Lafayette, California to address the needs of the globally expanding waste-to-energy market. Together we are helping customers implement environmentally friendly anaerobic digestion technology to convert organic waste into usable energy sources such as electricity and compressed natural gas (CNG).

About Dover:

Dover is a diversified global manufacturer with annual revenues of $8 billion. We deliver innovative equipment and components, specialty systems and support services through four major operating segments: Energy, Engineered Systems, Fluids, and Refrigeratons & Food Equipment. Dover combines global scale with operational agility to lead the markets we serve. Recognized for our entrepreneurial approach for 60 years, out team of over 27,000 employees takes an ownership mindset, collaborating with customers to redefine what's possible.