The MDM Market Leaders lists released this month present the most comprehensive picture of the top distributors by revenue in some of the largest distribution sectors. As part of this project, we spoke to dozens of distributors big and small to gain a broader perspective of the impact of last year's economic decline, as well as current trends. The verdict: Things are getting better.
Charles Gray, owner of industrial distributor Machinery and Factory Industrial Supply, Racine, WI, provided this apt quote: "The light at the end of the tunnel right now is not the proverbial oncoming train. We business owners are sleeping better these days."
Want to benchmark your last year against the MDM Market Leaders lists? Here are the average sales declines by sector for the MDM Market Leaders that provided us with revenue data for 2008 and 2009:
- Industrial distributors: -15 percent
- Power Transmission/Bearing: -16 percent
- Building Materials/Construction: -26 percent
- HVAC/Plumbing: -16 percent
- Electrical: -18 percent
Anecdotally, very few distributors grew revenues last year on and off the MDM Market Leaders lists.
Note: For a more comprehensive analysis of actual and real revenue performance across 18 individual U.S. wholesale distribution sectors, be sure to see the 2010 Wholesale Distribution Economic Reports, compiled by Dr. Adam J. Fein, at www.mdm.com/wder.