CENTURY HISTORY – SUCCESS SINCE 1975 Century Companies, Inc. began operations in 1975 as a specification-oriented construction contract company. Although the organization started with only two people, Jack and Ann Morgenstern, and a few construction jobs to supervise, the company expanded quickly.
Jack and Ann Morgenstern
Century Companies, Inc. (initially known as Century Paving) began its operations in Dillon, Montana in 1975. Initial capital was only $3,000.00 coupled with an understanding banker. Jack, a Vietnam veteran Seabee, supervised the work on a street construction project and various small jobs that were completed that year. Jack’s wife, Ann, was the bookkeeper and worked in an abandoned filling station which served as office and shop. The couple lived in a rented trailer having moved away from their Missoula home. Given the large responsibility with very limited resources and two small children, it was a strenuous and challenging year. It was a profitable year, however, and Century was born a success.
The following year (1976) brought a move and a similar, but expanded operation in Malta, Montana. It was that fall that the Morgenstern’s built a house in Lewistown, Montana and settled on that location as the permanent home for Century Paving. Lewistown was central and strategic to serving rural communities over a vast area.
Over the ensuing two decades, Jack and his team of professionals developed an extremely successful business in a widespread rural marketplace using a new, mobile-operation business model. Acquiring older, yet high-quality equipment, then rebuilding and servicing it to the extreme, became the means by which the company was able to service multiple markets across long distances. Crews of skilled trades people were assembled each season in order to service the company’s growing number of contracts.
By building unusually strong relationships with customers unaccustomed to outstanding service, Century has developed a reputation as the rural-market leader and, in many cases, the only company capable of doing the work to the required specifications.
Today, Century Companies, Inc. is clearly focused on its niche in the infrastructure construction and asphalt paving markets. The company serves literally hundreds of customers throughout the rural West, with an emphasis on Montana, Wyoming and the Dakota’s, providing high quality commercial paving, highway paving, grading, underground utility installation, concrete forming and pouring, gravel crushing and laying, and hot-mix asphalt materials production.
Century’s fleet of equipment, typically referred to as “rolling stock,” encompasses more than 400 pieces of large construction equipment including asphalt pavers, rollers, graders, loaders, skid steers, trucks, trailers and slip-form concrete curb machines. The company also leases or rents dozens of additional pieces of equipment and hires scores of independent-contractor truckers each construction season. Two light aircraft are also owned by the company in order to support its mobile operations.
In that hot-mix asphalt is not available in most of the rural areas Century works, the company must produce much of its own materials. Century has assembled and/or built, and now owns nine asphalt hot plants, eight of which are portable. Production capacities of the plants range from 50 tons to 400 tons of hot-mix asphalt per hour.
Next Generation Ownership Transition Moves Ahead
Williston Basin – Williston, ND
Williston Basin – Sidney, MT
Heavy Civil Division (Dept. of Defense Support Services)
Nevada/California Operations – Las Vegas, NV
Construction Management Division
Introduced Next-Generation Leadership
Wyoming Operations – Powell, WY
Highway Paving Division
Commercial Paving Division
Montana Operations & HQ – Lewistown, MT
First Asphalt Plant Purchased
Company Founded by Jack and Ann Morgenstern