A Closer Look with [JACK KEOUGH]
The Future of the Independent
Idon’t think anyone can deny the pressure being put on the independent distributor in today’s competitive industrial mar- ketplace.
We are currently in the midst of a mergers and acquisitions craze
that is causing the big to get bigger while Internet giants Google
(yes, I did say Google) and AmazonSupply.com have emerged as
Google is now running a beta site called Google Shopping for
Suppliers from which they are selling electrical and electronic supplies. There’s little doubt that they will be expanding into other
product groups such as industrial products.
They began testing the beta site in February and Google has
added additional products since the site launched. It appears to be
an extension of the popular Google shopping site, although this
new site is for the business-to-business marketplace rather than for
Lending a Hand to the Independent
There are many services out there that are available to the independent distributor to help them compete on a level that would
otherwise be unreachable for them because of their size alone.
One of these resources is Affiliated Distributors.
Affiliated Distributors provides a community for independent
distributors and manufacturers to be a part of in order to accelerate their individual growth while still remaining true to their business models and their local communities. The organization looks
to partner with independent companies that have strong track records in the industry, as well as deep roots in the areas they serve.
No company is too small to partner with AD. They seek out independents who need — or want — help scaling up their business.
This can be as simple as putting manufacturers in contact with
distributors to carry their product, or as complicated as providing
the back-end accounting and marketing resources that a smaller
company just can’t handle on their own. An independent might
have a great product or new service that is going to make a difference in the lives of their customers, but if they can’t tell anybody
about it, it doesn’t help anyone, least of all the distributor!
The AD Stats
• 618 independently owned members
• 3,605 locations
• 7 industries
• two countries with collective annual sales in excess of $26B
The product industries that AD serves include: electrical supplies,
industrial supplies, plumbing, PVF, HVAC, drywall and clean energy.
The customer markets include: industrial MRO, industrial OEM,
commercial construction, residential construction, utilities, retail
and government. Some of AD’s programs and services include:
• Data collection and reporting
• Rebate negotiations and administration
• Market planning support
• Product training support
• Product promotion support
• Peer-Peer Networking by functional responsibility
• Clean Energy sales training, products and services support
• Cost-savings on services and non-product purchases
For more information about AD, please visit their website at