New YESCO Facility in the News
4/10—Salt Lake City, Utah
On April 28, 2010, the following story featuring the new YESCO Salt Lake facility was published in Utah's respected Deseret News newspaper:
Family-owned Young Electric Sign Company
opens its new facility in Salt Lake City
By Lois M. Collins
SALT LAKE CITY — A tour through Young Electric Sign Co.'s new facility is a seemingly endless opportunity to look at pictures and models and say, "I know that sign!" or "You made that one?"
In its 90 years as a family-run business, the company, also called YESCO, has made thousands of signs, from the iconic giant double-scoop Snelgrove cone to the block-long arch over Fremont Street in Las Vegas. It built the Dee's hamburger clown and the Olympic Rings that graced the hillside east of town during the 2002 Games. Painted, vinyl, neon, electric, — the company makes them all.
It's also an integral part of the Amber Alert program in Utah and beyond. Utah Attorney Gen. Mark Shurtleff on Wednesday said the company offered to help with crime fighting efforts and to get children who were missing back where they belong. Then YESCO employees created software that will interrupt commercial electric signs to instead broadcast alerts. Ken Porter, Federal Bureau of Investigation assistant special agent in charge, said YESCO and its electric billboard-style signs have been key players in capturing some very bad guys.
But mostly, the company has been just a truly great place to work, a variety of employees told the Deseret News on Wednesday as the company cut the ribbon on its new facility, 1605 Gramercy, and threw a belated birthday party featuring speeches, a band, awards and a buffet.
The family-owned business opened in 1920. Thomas Young was one of six children that George and Emily Young brought from England, resettling in Ogden. The seventh, George Jr., had arrived before them and smoothed the way. Thomas, who loved to sketch, used his artistic abilities to make signs for others before launching his own enterprise. Now his son, Thomas Jr., is chairman of the board while his grandsons run the daily business: Mike is president, Paul is executive vice president and Jeff is vice president. They each came up through the ranks, working in a variety of departments.
It's also a family business made up of families, said Jeff Young, who emceed Wednesday's program. The company has found a place for the children, the siblings, the spouses and the cousins of good employees over the years. When Jeff asked those employees who are related to other employees to stand, it was a sizeable crowd.
"Father taught us signs are one of the cornerstones of a free enterprise system — a critical part," said Thomas Jr.
Salt Lake-based, it is not a local business. YESCO has offices and divisions from Mississippi to Washington — the company has about 600 employees at four Utah locations among 1,600 companywide — and its signs can be found across the globe.
The Youngs weren't looking to build a new plant, they said. They'd been happily ensconced in a building on 300 West since 1948 when Target approached them a few years ago about buying that location. That eventually led to the creation, from the ground up, of a new facility. The new digs are located on 9.82 acres near Bangerter and 1700 South, where YESCO no longer deals with pesky problems like vandalism of the giant trucks they need to move and hang the signs. The building, at 103,480 square feet, includes room to park the trucks inside.