Founded in 1939, Gilson Company is a manufacturer and distributor of equipment for construction materials testing, particle sizing and reduction, sampling and sample preparation. Its products are in use in QC/QA and R&D laboratories worldwide. Since opening its Columbus, Ohio, headquarters and distribution facility in 1984, annual sales growth has averaged 15 percent. Approximately 20 percent of total sales are overseas exports. Proprietary items comprise half of the 5,000 products available from Gilson and inventory is maintained for its most popular products to ensure same-day shipping. Operations in Gilson's administrative and distribution facilities take advantage of the latest in automation. Staff at its Columbus office currently numbers nearly 60 and includes customer service specialists, technical experts and R&D professionals. Another 60 are engaged in manufacturing its main line products at a sister company.