When Keith Record started Excel Utility Contractors in 2008, he had 10 employees and brought a wealth of industry knowledge to the table. It’s no surprise that with a great team and the right equipment, they had immense growth year after year. After 13 years in business, Excel was acquired by Sileo Capital in July 2021.
But Keith didn’t stop there! He saw the potential in a long-time friend and colleague’s business, Darrah Construction. With Excel’s multi-sized fleet and Darrah Construction’s bigger rock drills, Keith knew they’d be able to expand to a wider array of projects in various landscape conditions. In December 2021, Excel acquired Darrah Construction and the company is well on its way to becoming a powerhouse utility contractor.
Keith proudly served in the Navy for four years before he began his career in the Utility Industry. After serving his time in the military, Schatz Underground became his home for the next 30 years. Keith was given the opportunity, early in his career at Schatz, to bid and lead several military base projects involving upgrades and infrastructure installations. One of Keith’s first military base projects consisted of installing manholes and duct systems and then populating the ducts with fiber. There was no doubt that when it came to military base projects, Keith was the man for the job. Schatz entrusted in Keith to travel to the bases and secure the bids.
Since Keith’s time at Schatz Underground, he has overseen and worked projects at over 60 military bases. “I started on military bases and have never stopped,” Keith says. The relationships Keith has developed over the years have proven to be successful as Excel Utility Contractors continues to grow and run strong after 13 years of being in business. “We have a great team made up of the best talent in our industry,” says Keith.
Excel is always a top candidate for military base work, but they have also diversified over their 13 years of business. Near Excel’s headquarters in St. James, Missouri, the company has done work with Missouri American Water, Ameren, and fiber projects with municipalities. Beyond Central Missouri, Keith has won deals ranging from West Virginia to Texas to Montana with big names such as Facebook and AT&T.
Excel has been a forerunner in getting communities connected. In fact, the company even did a big “Fiber to the Home” project in Vermeer’s hometown of Pella, Iowa. There have been many other “Fiber to the Home” projects completed by Excel – something that has become even more essential in rural communities since many jobs have shifted to a remote environment.
For as long as Excel has been around, they’ve worked with the same rep at Vermeer Midwest. “Tim Noltkamper is great to work with,” Keith says. Communication is a main priority for Keith, and he says that Tim is always on call when he needs him.
When it comes to inventory, Excel keeps a full roster. Even though they subcontract out most of their drilling, they still keep nine total drills, ranging from D10x15 to D40x55. The 23 Yanmar mini excavators are another necessity for Excel.
“At this point we rarely even do demos. We trust the product and Tim will stand behind it.” – Keith Record
“If something goes wrong, you guys always make it right,” Keith continues. For any issue, Keith calls the Service Manager, Brad Coppernoll, directly. There is no middle man to deal with when it comes to keeping the customer’s machines up and running. We at Vermeer Midwest do whatever it takes to keep the customer productive.
For 50 years, Junior Kool has always said, “Take care of the customer, and the customer will take care of you.”
Whether we’ve been working with your business for 50 years or 13 years or even just a day, our main priority is to do what’s best for our customers.