January 10, 2022 by Manufacturing AUTOMATION
Frank Hasenfratz, Linamar’s founder and long-time executive chairman, passed away on January 8. Hasenfratz passed away peacefully, surrounded by family, after a courageous battle with cancer, at the age of 86.
Linamar Corporation’s board of directors shared that the company and its 26,000 employees have extended their sympathies to the Hasenfratz, Newton and Stoddart families for their loss.
“It is with a heavy heart that we announce the passing of my father, Frank Hasenfratz,” said Linamar CEO Linda Hasenfratz in a statement. “It was his vision and unrelenting drive that enabled us to build the company that Linamar is today. He leaves a tremendous legacy on the Canadian business landscape, changed the lives of so many, and provided careers, livelihoods and opportunities for thousands of people. He inspired and taught so many, myself most profoundly, and his spirit will live on in each of us as we continue to build the legacy of Linamar.”
Hasenfratz started Linamar as a one-man operation in the basement of his family home north of Guelph, Ontario in 1966. He combined his toolmaking and machinist experience with his determination to build the foundation of Linamar’s success.
Hasenfratz was honoured as the Canadian Entrepreneur of the Year, inducted into the Canadian Manufacturing Hall of Fame and the Canadian Business Hall of Fame, and was appointed to the Order of Canada.
A believer in giving back to the community, he supported the greater Guelph community and donated to many philanthropic causes.
The company stated in a release that Hasenfratz will be remembered fondly in the halls and on the production shop floor at Linamar Corporation where he mentored a generation of manufacturing and business leaders.
The company also stated:
“At Linamar, we will continue to live by Frank’s words to strive to continuously improve, act quickly and decisively, set goals and track progress and always ‘Do What We Do Best, Better.'”
As a matter of corporate governance related to the executive chair position, the board of directors has a succession and renewal plan in place which will be implemented in the coming weeks and will be announced to shareholders and the public in due course.