The year was 1978 when brothers Joe and Vince Tippmann, who were already producing fiberglass hockey boards, took notice of small oil rigs encased in fiberglass and set off on what would be a four-year mission to perfect the adaptation of this seamless technology for walk-in refrigeration and freezer units.  

Polar King International debuted at the 1982 National Restaurant Association trade show with great fanfare, and the success story began. 

The Tippmanns initially manufactured and shipped their state-of-the-art outdoor fiberglass commercial walk-in coolers and freezers from a modest 12,000-square-foot facility in New Haven, Indiana. With escalating demand, Polar King scaled up operation and relocated production to its current 204,000-square-foot facility in Fort Wayne, Indiana. In the past two years, the company has added additional manufacturing and warehouse space to keep up with accelerated sales.

For 40 years, Polar King has been revolutionizing the industry while maintaining its family roots and unwavering commitment to customer service and its community. The company has provided thousands of one-piece walk-in outdoor refrigeration and freezer units to single unit operators, chain restaurants, schools, health care facilities, government agencies and many others.

Polar King President Dave Schenkel said while the company is constantly evolving, its core values remain unchanged. 

“Though we are perpetually moving forward, we sustain the principles and standards upon which Polar King was founded,” Schenkel said. “We answer every phone call with a real person and never use automated email responses. The people of Polar King really make the difference. Many have served our customers for 30 years or more. They know what customers need and ensure that quality products are delivered where and when they are needed.”

In recent years, Polar King added two complementary business units: Polar Leasing Company and Polar King Mobile. Polar Leasing offers standard refrigerated walk-in rentals. Polar King Mobile was created to meet North America’s needs for a commercial-grade, affordable solution to refrigerated transport. These operations are making a positive impact during the global COVID-19 pandemic by providing storage for vaccines and test samples, as well as fulfilling requirements for emergency refrigeration/freezer storage in response to disasters. 

About Polar King 
Polar King’s 100% seamless fiberglass design utilized for all walk-in refrigeration and freezer units provides a continuous surface with rounded insulated corners to promote a sanitary environment. The durable, NSF-approved non-slip flooring system greatly reduces the risk of slips and falls. Operators can use a hose to quickly clean units and restore an as-new look without damaging insulation. Polar King uses fiberglass to reduce the potential for rusting, denting or corroding. The many innovative design features of these units cut operating costs, lower power bills, decrease maintenance/repair expenses and eliminate construction and replacement costs. Polar King structures offer the industry’s lowest lifetime cost of ownership. In doing its part to reduce food waste, by way of temperature controlled preservation, Polar King is positively impacting the global food chain.