Weber-Stephen

Weber-Stephen Products LLC is a Delaware limited liability company, located at 200 East Daniels Road, Palatine, Illinois 60067 U.S.A.

The original round kettle grill was built by George Stephen Sr., a part-owner of a sheet metal shop in Chicago who sought to improve on the brazier he had been using to cook with at home. The grill was produced using two sheet metal half-spheres normally used as parts of buoys built in his shop. Shortly after, he began selling his invention and the demand kept rising.

Because the grill became so successful, in 1952 George Stephen formed the barbecue division of the Weber Brothers factory. In late 1950s, Stephen bought out the Weber Brothers factory becoming the sole owner and devoting all his professional time to manufacturing and selling the Weber kettle. Soon thereafter, Stephen changed the company’s name to Weber-Stephen Products Co.

Original Weber Kettle
Original Weber Kettle

In March 2004, Weber-Stephen acquired competitor Ducane, moving the company into high-end propane and natural gas grills market. At the time, Weber stated that it would continue to manufacture Ducane gas barbecue grills at the Barnwell, South Carolina facility. However, Weber outsourced production of Ducane models to China.

Weber-Stephen has  been a family owned company until the end of 2010, when the Stephen family sold a majority stake to Chicago investment group BDT Capital Partners.

In 2012, Weber settled a class action suit out of court regarding their use of the phrase, “Made in USA”. Weber previously qualified the “Made in USA” statement by specifying their products are assembled in the USA with some components that are sourced globally. Here is an excerpt from Weber’s statement “Weber believes that because all Weber grills and the disputed accessories are designed and engineered in the USA, and all grills save for one line [Spirit] are manufactured and assembled in the USA using component parts primarily made in the USA, it did nothing wrong and therefore has valid defenses to plaintiff’s claims.” The court has not held a trial or ruled in favor of either party on any disputed issues. Weber and the plaintiff have agreed to settle the matter to avoid the costs of continued litigation. As a result of this suit, Weber can no longer claim to be made in America.

Even so, Weber-Stephen is one of the oldest and most respected manufacturers of Barbecue equipment and accessories in the world. The company has never stopped innovating and this can easily be seen in their products. Weber grilling equipment can cook beautifully and have great features.

Weber grills are not cheap, but when you consider the fact that they will stay with you for many years to come, you might consider them a bargain.

With a great reputation for quality, reliability and great customer service, Weber-Stephen continues to grow globally. It is now present in over 30 countries around the world.

Weber-Stephen also operates four restaurants located in Illinois and Indianapolis and publishes grilling-related recipe and cook books.

Check out our grilling equipment reviews section for more information on weber grills and other great grilling equipment available on the market

Weber Publications:

How Weber charcoal grills are made

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JlO6wf3DGOM

How Weber gas grills are made

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7NYDQ9kanuo

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