Our History

Celebrating 140 Years of Success

The vision for Arctic Glacier Premium Ice is carved from the entrepreneurial spirit of our founders more than 140 years ago in Manitoba, Canada. 

Our story begins in 1882 when Charles H. McNaughton purchased two horses, a couple of wagons and an icehouse on Fountain Street in Winnipeg, founding The Arctic Ice Company. McNaughton and his business partner James S. Nicholson cut blocks of ice from the Red River. The massive blocks of ice were insulated in sawdust and stored until ready to deliver via horse-drawn wagons and sold to the citizens of Winnipeg. 

In 1901, the Company made its first acquisition, merging with Winnipeg Ice Company. As Arctic Ice expanded, it re-imagined its operational approach. To meet increasing demand, the Company cut ice from different rivers and lakes, leveraged cars holding 40 tons per carload, and barges, holding 250 tons per load, to transport ice to their customers throughout the region.

When water levels dropped and Mother Nature proved an unreliable supplier, the enterprising team quickly pivoted to manufacturing ice. Purchasing 56 acres of land in St. Boniface, Manitoba and they poured 10 million gallons of water into a man-made reservoir. Using mechanical saws, the Company harvested 110,000 tons of ice in one year and stored it in their buildings and stables.  

The demand for natural ice began decreasing by 1950. Innovative from the outset and evolving with
the changing times, the Arctic Ice Company no longer harvested ice from natural sources and in 1954 made its last house delivery. The Company honors their historic Winnipeg business serving as title sponsor of the Arctic Glacier Winter Park at the Forks in Manitoba. Marking the place where the Red and Assiniboine Rivers meet and where the Company once harvested its ice from, the Forks is now a vibrant, mixed-use recreational area and jewel of community welcoming over 4 million visitors annually and contributing $1.26 million a year to the local economy. 

Over the course of its first 100 years in business, the Arctic Ice Company continued to evolve, establishing itself as Canada’s largest ice manufacturer, employing 800 Associates, boasting a fleet
of over 400 trucks, and delivering over 100 million bags of ice annually throughout North America.  
In 1996, Arctic Ice Company is rebranded Arctic Glacier Premium Ice. 

In the 25 years following the rebrand, Arctic Glacier Premium Ice has successfully unified over 150 regional and family-owned ice companies whose strong reputations for quality products and customer service has enabled the Company to emerge as North America’s foremost provider of certified,
high-quality ice products and services. Beginning in 1997 the Company entered the U.S., making several acquisitions throughout the Midwest. In the early 2000’s, the Company began expanding eastward with key acquisitions in New York and Pennsylvania. Between 2006 and 2007,  the Company expanded its reach to include the U.S. West coast, consolidating several regional ice companies and the acquisition of California’s market leader Union Ice Company whose legacy also traces back to 1882.

Recent acquisitions enabling new market entries include Star Ice and Fuel of Washington, Superior Ice Company of Indiana, Southeastern Ice of Oklahoma, AC Ice Company of Colorado, Getchell Bros of Maine, and Brookline Ice Company of Massachusetts. In 2022, the company opened its newest
state-of-the-art production facility in Montreal, Canada. 

Backed by the financial wherewithal of The Carlyle Group, the Company continuously makes focused investments in technology, leading talent, and environmentally sustainable practices to create the most value for their customers and support the livelihoods of their Associates and the communities where they operate.

From those early, humble beginnings as a one-icehouse, two-horse company to its position today as an international industry-leading powerhouse, Arctic Glacier Premium Ice is the premier provider of high-quality, premium ice products serving North America. For over 140 years the company has perfected the art of ice making, best-in-class service, food safety, and reliable logistics. Arctic Glacier produces and delivers over two billion pounds of ice annually to more than 75,000 customer locations across the U.S. and Canada and employs thousands of Associates from locations across North America.

About The Carlyle Group

Carlyle (NASDAQ: CG) is a global investment firm with deep industry expertise that deploys private capital across three business segments: Global Private Equity, Global Credit and Global Investment Solutions. With $301 billion of assets under management as of December 31, 2021, Carlyle’s purpose
is to invest wisely and create value on behalf of its investors, portfolio companies and the communities in which we live and invest. Carlyle employs nearly 1,850 people in 26 offices across five continents.

Further information is available at www.carlyle.com.  

Acquisitions under The Carlyle Group Leadership
• 2017 – Astoria Ice
• 2017 – Tinley Ice Company
• 2018 – Emerald Water & Ice
• 2018 – Mountain Ice
• 2018 – Genos Ice
• 2018 – Star Ice & Fuel
• 2018 – Nuzzolese Bros Ice
• 2018 – Rose Ice
• 2018 – Kwik Ice
• 2018 – Holiday Ice Corp and Holiday Ice LLC
• 2019 – American Ice LLC
• 2019 – Northern Ice
• 2019 – Avalanche Ice LLC – Medford OR
• 2019 – Harper County Ice
• 2019 – Creed Ice
• 2019 – Fosters Frozen Water
• 2019 – Hicks Ice – Theresa NY
• 2019 – Cosner Ice
• 2019 – J&S Ice
• 2020 – Superior Ice – Indianapolis IN
• 2021 – Southeastern Ice – Oklahoma
• 2021 – Norton Ice – Kansas
• 2021 – Mid-Central Ice – Minnesota
• 2021 – Clayville Ice Products Co, LLC – New York
• 2021 – Gem Ice – Oregon (The Dalles)
• 2021 – AC Ice – Colorado
• 2021 – Hawkeye Ice – Illinois
• 2021 – Diamond Ice – California
• 2021 – Getchell Bros – Maine
• 2021 – Blue Sky Ice – Gilette WY
• 2022 – IceSurance – NY_CA
• 2022 – Brookline Ice Company – Massachusetts

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