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The UP Companies Make Strategic Leadership Transitions

Michael B. Kennedy
Michael B. Kennedy
Michael B. Kennedy
Michael B. Kennedy
Brian W. Arnold
Brian W. Arnold
ST. LOUIS, MO — The UP Companies (UPCO) announces the recent transition of President Michael B. Kennedy to the role of Chief Executive Officer, and Vice President and Partner Brian W. Arnold to the role of President.

As CEO, Kennedy will continue to focus on business development opportunities, stakeholder relationships, corporate financial strategies, community involvement initiatives, and strategic planning. As President, Arnold will work directly with the UPCO leadership team and the recently promoted Vice President of Operations Steve Grass to implement operational processes and initiatives across all businesses (Power UP Electrical Contractors, Square UP Builders, and Hustle UP Laborers) to enhance internal efficiencies and external deliverables.

Senior Vice President and Partner Gerhard Glassl will take on increased responsibilities related to electrical material procurement, warehouse and supply operations, and prefabrication enhancements as well as taking a direct Project Executive role on several key electrical projects.

The construction industry has faced unique and unprecedented challenges over the last two years, including the pandemic, disruptions to the supply chain, material price escalations, labor shortages, and general economic uncertainty.

“We started The UP Companies during a recession. The structure and concept of our family of companies was created to be uniquely positioned to provide the best value to our customers — a combination of price, quality, safety, and innovation,” Arnold said. “After a decade of success, it is time to take our value proposition to the next level.”

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In 2018, UPCO expanded its line of services and established Hustle UP, LLC to meet the increasing need from owners, general contractors, and subcontractors for general labor, site maintenance, and selective demo services. And in 2019, UPCO broadened its geographic reach by opening a regional office in Kansas City as their client base continued to expand west.

UPCO currently employs more than 450 people between its St. Louis and Kansas City offices and is focused on stability and operational excellence in its core businesses while forecasting selective growth in its Kansas City operation as it continues to expand UPCO’s brand recognition and reputation in the region.

“The growth and geographic expansion of all our operating companies has created an even greater need to focus on new cross-company integrative strategies at levels within our organization,” Arnold said. “We’re concentrating our efforts on the further advancement of the UPCO brand and shared best practices and technologies between all companies in both the office and field, all while making good on our Core Focus, staying committed to our Core Values, and continuing to look UP in both the good times and the challenging times.”

“People and process are two of our greatest assets. Being good stewards of the opportunities we have been given demands that we operate at best-of-class levels of efficiency. It requires us to have systems and processes that enable us to predict, and that we continue to create opportunities for people to develop and maximize their talents,” Kennedy said. “This transition solidifies our commitment to the UPCO brand, our customers, the communities we serve, and all of our current and future team members who entrust us with their time and talent.”

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