McFeely's

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I had a phone call from McFeely's this morning and the caller ID showed as LAB SAFETY SUPP. Art
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Good for Ray. Not good for us, or for "McFeely's" - you can bet on that. JP
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Jay Pique wrote:

Lab Safety Supply is the parent company of WW Grainger. I'm not sure that a hardware company getting taken over by Grainger is a bad thing at all, especially if they keep the brands separate, which they seem to be planning to do.
Here's the press release:
http://www.labsafety.com/aboutus/pressrel.htm#mcfeely
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wrote:

Actually, it's the other way around. From the press release you cite below:
"Grainger, a leading North American industrial distributor, today announced its Lab Safety Supply (LSS) subsidiary has acquired substantially all of the assets of McFeely’s Square Drive Screws of Lynchburg, Virginia. [...]"

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Doug Miller (alphageek at milmac dot com)
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Mmmmmmm. We are all making a lot of assumptions here. McFeely has developed an asset worth a lot of money. Maybe it was time to move on. I just hope that Granger can keep that "AwChucks' image alive, an image I found so endearing and was willing to pay extra for. That one-on-one relationship is so damned rare these days. Will Granger say: "I'll get on it, Rob, btw, how is your sister?" Not bloody likely. The whole square drive profit centre will get a good thinning, and they'll keep those few things which will make them money. Guys like McFeely also had parts and pieces, not as a profit centre, but as a complement to a profit centre. Granger's MBA's are not likely to give a damn about that. McFeely was a Festool dealer as well....that makes for an interesting marriage.
My gut-feeling tells me that McFeely did all right, WE are not likely to benefit. Granger will likely rape the brand. Maybe we'll get square-drive screws made in China, which may or may not fit our drivers.
</cynicism>
r
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You seem to be making a lot of assumptions based on a gut-feeling...now I'm not going to say that your predictions are NOT going to come true, just the LSS and Grainger have been doing business for a long time and don't tend towards the "buy and gut" method that many other companies do. LSS started out in a dudes garage, was easy going and easy to deal with then and nothing about that has chaged in the past 20 years or so that I've dealt with them.
And no...I have no connection to them other than having the same ZIP code.
Mike
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Robatoy wrote:

Where do you think McFeely's gets them now?
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Jack
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This deserves a bit of clarification however.
While we do import fasteners, they're made to our specifications. We don't just buy what's available and trust me, there is a lot of questionable stuff available to buy.
Also, it's important to note that we still do business with North American distributors. The industry changed on us and many of our manufacturing partners became import/export brokers after it became impossible for them to compete otherwise. I was there during the great change-over (as we like to refer to it) and it wasn't something for which we lobbied. We accepted it only after it became clear that the fasteners being brought over would meet our specifications. I know how seriously Jim Ray took the change as I was there to watch him write the letter to our customers.
As an aside, as a part of our standard testing process, we check for torsional strength and the quality of "bit fit". That's not to say that we never make a mistake but we're not about to accept inferior products just because they're cheaper. It goes against who we are. Our imported screws match and even exceed the torsional strength of our previous North American-made product.
Back on topic, when our manufacturing partners changed to import/ export brokers, we lowered our prices. Why? We felt that a cost reduction should be passed on to our customers. We did that even though the quality was equivalent.
Trust me, there's no desire to get rid of what makes us special. Yes, we're part of the Grainger family but we'll never lose focus of those responsible for our success. And I'm pleased to say there's been no effort to make us do so. Our goals are all related to improving our service, not lowering it.
And we have you all to hold our feet to the fire. If we fail you, call me. My contact info is in my profile and my #1 professional goal is to make sure we don't let you down.
Always yours,
Ron

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