Debra Cerda (standing) national accounts rep, and Mercedes Garcia, national customer service and internet rep, also work out of the Santa Fe Springs facility.Luis Asturias, will-call customer service and receiving clerk at the new Santa Fe Springs facility, helps a customer picking up a tool order.The Santa Fe Springs facility also has a large call center for California customers, managed by Irma Santos and staffed with professional tool, equipment, and PBE specialists.Vice president U.S. sales for the PBE division, Todd D’Angelo, has spent 40 years in the industry, including president and CEO of D’Angelo & Sons before joining Medco in 2010.    Joe Sanchez, Fresno DC warehouse associate, pulls an order from the $11 million inventory in the 132,000-square-foot warehouse.

Medco delivers more than product with seasoned management team’s expertise

PBE and T&E distribution company invests millions of dollars in operating efficiencies, value-added services

Fresno, Calif.—Medco differentiates its PBE supply and mechanical tool and equipment distribution company with market knowledge, value-added services and on-time delivery, said Todd D’Angelo, vice president U.S. sales for the PBE division, serving traditional jobbers, auto parts stores, and mobile tool dealers.

“Medco is unlike any other warehouse distributor. We have a management team that combines PBE and tool and equipment expertise with backgrounds in business disciplines that include marketing, manufacturing, information technology, advertising, logistics, customer service, finance, and hands-on web based training,” he said. “And we have invested millions of dollars in technology to improve operating efficiencies for our customers and ourselves.”

D’Angelo said Medco (Manufacturers Equipment Distribution Company) also has a purchasing team that is organized by product category, allowing them to focus on individual manufacturers to negotiate best pricing and programs while developing long-term relationships. 

“We continue to upgrade every process, system, and customer interaction as we endeavor to add more value for our customers. We are committed to our business and to yours, and recognize that our growth will only come from helping your business grow.”

Medco represents more than 400 manufacturer lines, over 100,000 SKUs, and operates fully stocked warehouses in 16 cities across the U.S., including the newly expanded 110,000-square-foot Fresno distribution center, which opened in 2002.

“The Fresno DC was the first West Coast warehouse and originally only stocked mechanical tools and equipment,” Erik Ceballos, Fresno distribution center manager, said. “We later added PBE and currently have an $11 million inventory.”

“We ship 99 percent of our orders out the same day and we use UPS, FED-EX, or common carriers to make deliveries,” Ceballos said. “And our shipments reach 90 percent of the country within two days.”

D’Angelo said the company has had double-digit increases over the past five years, primarily due to calling on new market segments such as heavy duty, fleet, and agriculture, as well as the acquisition of Nestor Tools and California Tools. 

“I haven’t seen our final numbers for 2016,” he said. “However, since the industry hasn’t grown that much in the past five years our growth has come from the new markets and developing a lot of value-added programs, especially centered on technology and through our website. We also have an Air Conditioning tech book coming out to help our customer’s sale at the shop level.”

The company has regional sales meetings every quarter and sales associates spend a lot of time with manufacturers’ reps working in the field.

“Riding around with a manufacturer’s rep really increases your knowledge on their product line,” he said. “We also have gone back to the factory and had special training on our private label brands Such as ATD, Axis, and NESCO.

“We also have Webinars and have developed several educational courses on our website called Medco University where you can learn about compressors, air management, lighting and, other product categories. We have about 150 open houses a year after hours with tools and equipment and lunch.”

Some of the hot sellers for both the mechanical and collision segments include HVAC and diagnostics.

“New A/C machines for the 1234-yf refrigerant are spiking, including the Robinair AC1234-6 1234YF and the new Bosch OTC Evolve diagnostics tool for pre- and post-scans to the collision shops,” D’Angelo said. “We have also had a 20-percent increase in safety products, which is growing at a significant pace.”

Manufacturer-supplied product information, such as features, photos, and benefits, are extremely important to both the sales team, and his customers.

“We need more than just a part number, price, and availability,” he said. “Especially for our publications and website to give customers what they need.”

Medco also works closely with its channel partners for feedback.

 “We listen to our jobbers. We try and source their needs from an existing manufacturer and look for the best value for our customers,” D’Angelo said.

Jobbers are keeping less inventory in stock and using the WD as a virtual warehouse, D’Angelo said, which puts more pressure on the WD to have the right inventory in stock and being able to ship it out the same day.” 

It also increases the WD freight cost because jobbers use just-in-time (JIT) inventory, he added. It helps the WD by having the jobber purchase more from them and less direct from the manufacturer where they have to meet certain freight requirements and the delivery process is much longer.

“This is good for the jobber because they get great service at a great price and they are able to keep less inventory in-house which hopefully means a better cash flow for them.”

Parts & People

Parts & People is published monthly by Automotive Counseling and Publishing Company, Inc., a Colorado corporation, P.O. Box 18731 Denver, CO 80203, 303-765-4664. President-Lance Buchner. Founded by Lance Buchner and Dave Lucia.

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