The Advantages of National Wholesalers
August 18, 2008
SIOUX FALLS, S.D. - Sioux Falls is growing. In fact, Kevin Severy, president of Winair in Sioux Falls, describes the community as “one of the fastest growing in the United States.” This HVACR distributor is one of 57 Winair locations that specialize in HVACR wholesale-distribution across the United States.
Severy said that with the support he gets from Winair and the number of quality HVACR contractors in the area, he has positioned himself to be competitive and profitable. But he isn’t about to rest on his laurels. He wants to keep improving his business model with the help of the distributor’s many operational and management tools, and he wants his customers to learn more about Winair’s private label equipment (NuTone) and how selling this line can be profitable and establish a brand name image.
BACKGROUNDWinair is a subsidiary of WinWholesale, Dayton, Ohio. WinWholesale also operates other wholesale-distribution companies including Winnelson, Winair, Winlectric, Windustrial, Wintronic, Winwater, and Winsupply. In 2005, WinWholesale acquired Noland Co., an HVAC, plumbing, electrical, and industrial wholesaler. There are currently more than 100 Noland branches in 13 states.
Part of the business philosophy of the Win companies is to offer consulting services to improve wholesaling operations. These services include accounting, payroll, insurance administration and data processing services, group buying, and distribution center services. Winair and Noland also offer its own private brand line of equipment to distributors.
Last December, Nordyne and WinWholesale announced the introduction of the NuTone Heating and Cooling Products line to the HVAC marketplace. NuTone Heating and Cooling Products are available through Noland branches and participating WinAir distributors.
“NuTone and WinWholesale share a common philosophy of growth and service levels,” said Severy. “NuTone fits in the Winair business model by offering marketing, warranties, and unique programs.”
Severy said his own experience with WinAir began 30 years ago. “My affiliation with Winair started with the WinWholesale group of companies,” he said. “I started working in the warehouse for N.O. Nelson in Sheridan, Wyoming, during high school in the late 1970s in the plumbing industry. Knowing that there was a great opportunity with this organization, I moved to Missouri where I had the opportunity to work for Wintemp (the name of Winair at the time).
“I then left Missouri to open a Winair in eastern Nebraska. As there were no other Winair companies in that region, I was able to be instrumental in opening several new Win companies. After 19 years of being president of Norfolk Winair, I was ready for a new challenge and moved to Sioux Falls.”
WHOLESALER SUPPORTSevery believes that being a Winair wholesaler allows him to have ownership in the company, giving him the ability to make decisions that are in the best interest of the company. He added, “Having the WinWholesale group to rely on for buying power is a huge advantage, too.”
Although the WinWholesale company has more than 450 locations across the United States, each one is treated as a local, independently owned business, and that has distinct advantages. “The environment is close knit, with employees being a huge part of the success of a company,” Severy said. “With the owner being on site, the customers are able to talk directly to an owner and this reinforces that the customer comes first.”
There are several fundamental beliefs that define WinWholesale:
• Local Win management must own a meaningful part of their company.
• Success and accomplishment await the local Win president who properly manages his or her own company and willingly accepts complete responsibility for it.
• Successful wholesalers tend to follow the same operational patterns, doing roughly the same things at the same time, whether daily, monthly, or annually.
• Wholesaling is a local business whose success is built on establishing and maintaining strong customer relationships.
• WinWholesale’s role is to establish and protect the overall policies and standards for the Win organization.
Severy is trying to encourage other business owners and would-be owners to consider opening up their own Winair branches. “We are spreading the word by providing future president training programs to our employees to encourage company growth,” he said. “We also recruit candidates by offering the entrepreneurial opportunity to peers in our industry.
“Our organization is continually looking for hard-working entrepreneurs who are interested in owning their own business.”
For now, Severy is spending a lot of time cementing his company’s place in the Sioux Falls community. “As the city grows, so does the number of HVAC contractors,” he said. “We strive to work with the companies that have the same customer-oriented values that we have and provide quality products and services. When our customers grow, we grow.”
For more information, visit www.winwholesale.com.
Publication date: 08/18/2008