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SD Industries Hopes China Trade Mission Will Build Lasting Business Connections

This is the fourth and final in a series spotlighting four of the eleven companies who will be traveling with Gov. Dennis Daugaard this week on his third trade mission to China.

Thursday, May 8, 2014

For Brian Stork, doing business in South Dakota and doing business well all starts with communication—communication which leads to a business relationship which then leads to a successful business partnership. A partnership he hopes to start and build not just in China, but right here in South Dakota too.

“One of my main goals when we travel to China this week is to open up the lines of communication and really start having a conversation with fellow business owners about how we can generate more revenue coming into South Dakota, and using that revenue to boost our local economy even more,” said Stork, CEO of SD Industries (SDI) and Sharp Industries of Alexandria. “It is an honor and a privilege to join the governor on this trip and I hope we all take something away from it.”

SD Industries, based out of Alexandria, S.D., was founded in January 2006 by a team who’s had more than 25 years of experience in the hog industry. SDI manufactures stainless steel feeding equipment for the hog industry, but also started manufacturing other specialty products over the years. From doors for hog, dairy and medical industries to equipment for semis in the trucking industry, according to Michael Ulrich, national sales manager, SDI has dabbled in a little bit of everything. But its primary focus remains in the hog industry.

“Basically anything stainless steel in a hog facility more than likely came from our facility,” Ulrich said.

But why stainless steel? According to Ulrich and Stork, there’s a wealth of benefits to using stainless steel.

“Stainless steel lasts longer. It’s more durable than plastic and wood. It’s easier to clean and it doesn’t rust. On top of all that, stainless steel is very sanitary,” Ulrich said. “That’s why so many of the companies we work with are using or switching to stainless.”

That’s why Gov. Daugaard’s trade mission appealed to Stork. According to him, the hog industry is a very large Industry in China and continues to grow. And while SDI isn’t currently exporting to China, Stork says some of his dealers already do.

“I want to be able to assist our dealers who are currently exporting to China—help build those relationships and start building opportunities of our own as well,” said Stork. “I’m looking forward to making some business acquaintances. It’s good for business; it’s good for economic development and it’s a good opportunity for Chinese companies to do business in South Dakota.”

The South Dakota delegation leaves tomorrow, Friday, May 9, and will return to the United States next Friday. For more information about SDI, visit

Media Contact

Members of the media requesting more information should contact Natalie Likness at or (605) 773-3301.