Courtesy of Billboard Magazine (and of
course all material here is implicitly copyright 1964 by Billboard
June 13, 1964.
Sam Stern Stays On As Williams Topper. CHICAGO - The Seeburg Corporation, already the country's largest manufacturer of coin-operated equipment, last week acquired Williams Electronic Manufacturing Corporation, large amusement manufacturing concern here. [their clumsy syntax, not my typo!]
The acquisition makes Seeburg the first firm in the country to manufacture a full circle of coin-operated equipment: phonographs, vending machines and amusement games.
Seeburg said it will operate Williams as a fully owned subsidiary. Williams will continue with its amusement machine production and is expected to maintain its present system of distribution.
Stern Stays On. Sam Stern, Williams president, stays on as vice-president and general manager of the firm. Delbert W. Coleman, Seeburg board chairman, assumes a similar post with Williams, as does J. Cameron Gordon, recently elected Seeburg president.
Other Williams officers include: Jack Mittel, vice-president in charge of sales; Gordon T. Horlick, vice-president in charge of engineering; Russell W. Babb, vice-president and controller; John J. Keefer, treasurer; Lillian K. Kubicek, secretary; John F. Nichols, assistant secretary; and Edgar E. Tober, assistant secretary.
Fits Present Pattern.
"Several of our distributors are already distributors of the excellent Williams line of equipment and practically all are familiar with the design characteristics of Williams products.
"It also adds another element to our corporate structure to support our claim to being the world's largest manufacturer of coin-operated equipment," Gordon said.
The Seeburg president said it was Seeburg's intention that Williams continue to be operated under Sam Stern's management
Seeburg first announced its intention to buy Williams at its national distributor meeting in Chicago several weeks ago.
In buying Williams, Seeburg acquired all the issued and outstanding shares of capital stock from the firm's two shareholders, Samuel Stern and Bernard Weinberg.
Current Production. Williams is currently producing a two-player pinball game, San Francisco, and a baseball game, Grand Slam. The firm will continue with this production until it goes on its annual vacation June 26.
In July, Williams will start to produce a single-player pinball game, Heat Wave.
Williams was founded in 1946 by Harry Williams, now head of Southland Engineering Company, Santa Monica, Calif. Sam Stern came in as vice-president in 1949 and acquired full control of the company from Williams 10 years later.
The firm is one of the largest amusement manufacturing concerns in the city with some 40,000 square feet of plant space.
September 12, 1964.
Sam Stern To Head Games Subsidiary.
Sam Stern, president of Seeburg's Williams subsidiary, will head the United operation and retain his duties with Williams. No other personnel shifts were announced.
Stern, a coin machine manufacturing veteran, acquired an interest in Williams (founded in 1944 by Harry Williams) [yes, I know, that is a different date than the previous article!] shortly after the firm was established. He became executive vice-president in 1948 [again, a different date...], and three years later [what happened to "ten"?!?] assumed full control of the stock and became president.
When Seeburg bought out Williams earlier this year, Stern remained in charge of the division.
The Seeburg acquisition of United assets does not include the patents, tools and dies on the United juke box. United went into production on a music machine in the late 1950's with limited success. The machine is not currently in production.
The purchase does include United's main plant on Chicago's California Avenue, but it does not include United's other factories in the Chicago area.
Seeburg began its acquisition program in 1958 with the purchase of the Bert Mills Coffee machine. Later purchases included the Lyons cold drink machine, the Bally hot drink machine, the Pic-a-Pack utility vender, the Kinsman Organ Company, the Choice-vend and Cavalier bottle and can drink machines, the Du Grenier cigaret machine, and the Williams game line.
William F. Adair, Seeburg executive vice-president in charge of sales, said the the United acquisition now allows Seeburg distributors to provide operators with a complete game line as well as complete lines in music and vending.
While United has made many types of amusement machines, its bowling games and shuffle alleys have been primarily responsible for its reputation. Williams is strongest in the pinball and baseball machine lines.
United was founded in 1942 by Lyn Durant. Principal officers are Durant, president and treasurer; Herb Oettinger, vice-president and secretary; and Ray Riehl and Billy DeSelm, vice-presidents.
In the October 31 issue there was a blurb about Williams moving all of its manufacturing to the United plant on California Avenue...
While the story-to-story mismatches in dates don't give one great
confidence that this can be used as a precise historical record, it does
give the general gist of "what became of United"...
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