Saturday Spotlight: Shining Light Company – The Toro Company

Toro (NYSE: TTC) is a Fortune 500 American manufacturer of turf maintenance equipment, snow removal equipment, and water-saving irrigation systems. Headquartered in Bloomington, Minnesota and in business sinceJuly 1914, they have grown to over 6,800 employees worldwide and a global reach to more than 90 countries. Toro has made it their number one priority to build a company around trust and integrity, and investing in their employees and communities they serve. The Toro brand can be seen all over the world, like at St. Andrews Links Golf Course in Scotland, Pinehurst Resort in North Carolina, Olympic Golf Courses in Rio de Janerio, Walt Disney World Resorts, and Wimbledon Championships.

On July 10, 1914, the Toro Motor Company was founded to supply reliable tractor motors to The Bull Tractor Company in Minneapolis, MN. The name ‘Toro’ came from the company’s association with The Bull Tractor Company. After Bull Tractor went out of business, Toro decided to focus more on the mowing industry. In 1919, the Minikahda Club in Minneapolis requested Toro create a motorized fairway mower that would replace the traditional horse-drawn equipment. To fulfill their request, Toro mounted five lawn mowers to the front of a farm tractor.  This was the beginning of the Standard Golf Machine and motorized golf course equipment industry was born. Today, Toro is the household name and global leader in turf and landscape maintenance and irrigation solutions.

Toro puts significant emphasis on company and employee values. They use a ‘Pride in Excellence’ model to illustrate how their employees conduct business, interact with each other and support their customers. The model is broken up into two components, “People Values”, like respect and trust, empowerment, and communication, and “Performance Values”, such as “Do what we say we will do, be customer driver with urgency, and embrace risk and opportunity.”

Toro strives to enrich the land, communities, and industries they serve.  They have built a legacy of giving back to the communities where people live and work.  Employees give their time and talents to charitable organizations and civic projects focusing on water conservation, preserving outdoor environments, and youth enrichment activities.  The company’s Corporate Volunteer program allows employees the opportunity to volunteer up to 20 hours of service time during their workday each year.  Toro employees have been known to give time to organizations like Habitat for Humanity and United Way. If an employee volunteers at least 30 hours of their own time to a non-profit, it will qualify that non-profit for a financial grant program through the company called “Dollars for Doers”. They also give back a minimum of 2% of their pre-tax profits to worthy causes in the community, and they have a Matching Gifts Program where employee contributions to designated non-profits are matched 2:1.

The Toro Company is an organization that is not run by profit margins, but by a value based culture that reflects in how they conduct business. This values-based culture and the belief that the most important aspect of its company is their employees has made them a world leader in their industry. For this, we are pleased to recognize again The Toro Company as a Shining Light Company!


DISCLOSURE: Shining Light Companies are exemplary companies who live out the Golden Rule in their business practices, demonstrate strong servant leadership and create compelling value through the products and services they offer. This is intended for general information purposes concerning only the values, corporate culture and business practices of the companies being spotlighted. It DOES NOT incorporate any analysis of the companies’ investment merit based on intrinsic value, fundamental analysis, etc. This must not be construed as investment advice or a buy/sell recommendation. These companies may or may not be included in our LightPoint Portfolios at any given time.