SAGINAW TOWNSHIP, MI— More than 40 years ago, Al Thieme started Amigo with the simple goal of helping people.
Today, Amigo’s mobility products are in homes and shopping centers across the globe, helping people maintain their independence and their pride.
Thieme today, Friday, Nov. 9, receives the Dr. Samuel H. Shaheen Vision of Free Enterprise Award from the Saginaw County Chamber of Commerce for his passion and commitment to grow his business right here in Saginaw County.
The 75-year-old Thieme has, with the help of his wife, Beth, Amigo’s chief executive officer, has grown Amigo from a one-man operation in a small home in Bridgeport Township to a sprawling facility and an international company with nearly 100 employees.
“We are very proud and pleased that we have been able to keep manufacturing of this product in Michigan and in Saginaw County,” Thieme said.
Earlier this year, Amigo was named Manufacturer of the Year by the Michigan Manufacturer’s Association.
Over the past five years, the company has grown its sales 300 percent, entering new international markets and keeping on the lookout for new opportunities.
But it’s not the praise that get’s Thieme to work every morning. Thieme says he loves what he does because he gets to help people.
“We have some people who have been using an Amigo for 20 to 30 years come into the store and tell us how it has changed their life; that they’re doing things with their family and they’re out in the community,” Thieme said. “That’s what’s so rewarding.”