Global Fastener News

1995 FIN – Ohio Distributors Form Alliance

June 23
00:00 2013

June 6, 1995 FIN – Fifteen Ohio distributors, including Mid-State Bolt & Nut, Columbus, Ohio, formed iPower of Ohio to provide single-source purchasing for Maintenance, Repair & Operations (MRO) customers.
IPower of Ohio president Rick Rogers said the alliance will reduce customer procurement costs 20% to 40% and provide technical support and inventory management. Orders go to the headquarters in Akron, Ohio, and are filled by the 15 distributors. Customers are sent just one monthly invoice.
Customers may place orders through an on-line computer network that includes a 400,000-item catalog. Customers schedule shipping and manage inventory on-line to reduce shipping, warehousing and overhead costs. The distributors all use bar coding, EDI and other services.
The 15 distributors have combined facilities in excess of one million sq ft and $600 million in sales. They have an average of 64 years of industrial distribution experience.
Rogers researched the distributorships “with a big emphasis on long-standing, solid companies which are locally owned,”
Mid-State’s Don Broehm told FIN: “We are all specialists in our own area.”

Mid-State, founded in 1946 by Bob Bobier and Ed Broehm, is based in Columbus and has a 27,000 item inventory at facilities in Columbus, Cleveland and Cincinnati.
Broehm said Rogers, of B.W. Rogers Co. of Akron, started looking for alliance partners after seeing customers go to consortiums or ” catalog houses.”
The iPower consortium was put together to “stem the outflow of business,” Broehm said.
IPower, headed by CEO Mike Marvin, is a division of Parker Hannifin Corporation, the Cleveland –based manufacturer of power train equipment. iPower is associated with the Innovative Distribution Group (IDG) alliance of New England.
Parker launched iPower Distribution Group, Inc. as “a total business system that offers the broadest array of industrial products and services to customers who are interested in integrated supply.” Marvin said.
“In this age of cost squeezes, margin squeezes and intensely competitive industrial distributor chains, iPower gives distributors a new lease on life,” Marvin said.
IDG has sold franchises in 16 states and an additional 12 are expected to be sold this year.
Marvin said sales of iPower distributors shareholders are $2.3 billion and sales are expected to exceed $7 billion this year.
“Their thought is to go nationwide so customers such as GM, Ford or others can purchase nationally instead of just in the state of Ohio.” Broehm said.
“Together they take the next logical step with a shared vision: consolidation of the purchasing process for Ohio businesses and the establishment of a national and global network of supply alliances to serve customers around the country,” Rogers said.
©1995/2013 Fastener Industry News.
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