Breakthrough solutions often come as a result of careful market research and planning. Sometimes, however, the best ideas occur on the spur of the moment. For example, Bobby Williams and Steve Blackwell, co-owners of United Tool and Fastener in Houston, had been discussing ways to provide faster service to major customers. They were looking for a way to keep contractors supplied with the products they need on the job site in a more timely manner.
When distributors talk about being a single source supplier, they are typically talking about the
strategy of providing everything their customers need, from power and hand tools to accessories, fasteners
and other consumables. There are many such single sources or “one-stop shop” distributors across the