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Sebastian Ernst

Taking business to new places

trusted contact for a new North American operation

A German-based manufacturer entrusted Wipfli with all of its administrative functions, from HR to finance and accounting, to establish its first facility in North America without on-the-ground management staff.  

The Challenge

Sebastian Ernst Company, a manufacturer of high-quality aluminum ladders and scaffolds, wanted to add a production facility in Wisconsin to meet demand for high-tech ladders used in wind turbine towers. But Sebastian Ernst didn’t have any U.S.-based employees who could set up the business or manage day-to-day back-office operations. It needed help navigating the tax and accounting complexities of an international expansion, plus on-the-ground support for administrative functions.

The Solution

In Wipfli, Sebastian Ernst found a partner who could manage it all. Wipfli’s HR professionals interviewed and hired manufacturing staff for the new plant, and an accounting and finance team from Wipfli established a U.S. back office. Sebastian Ernst outsourced all its non-revenue-generating functions to Wipfli, including payroll, bookkeeping, tax services and financial reporting. Wipfli also set up an online portal so Sebastian Ernst’s management team could access the plant’s financial and administrative information from anywhere, at any time.

With Wipfli, we were able to get our U.S. operations up and running quickly and cost-effectively.
Alfred Dittrich, General Manager at Sebastian Ernst Company

The results

Outsourcing all the company’s critical functions to one partner made it easier for Sebastian Ernst to manage the new plant from afar. Wipfli took the complexity and worry out of the international expansion and helped Sebastian Ernst establish a new plant without adding a non-revenue-generating headcount. The web portal added confidence and convenience and gave Sebastian Ernst a cost-effective way to manage its new international facility.

decrease in the number of GL accounts