First Supply Breaks Ground on Wisconsin DC - Modern Distribution Management

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First Supply Breaks Ground on Wisconsin DC

The 308,000-square-foot facility is projected to open by the first quarter of 2025.

Family-owned and operated First Companies — the parent company of First Supply — broke ground April 17 in West Salem, WI on what is to be a state-of-the-art distribution center for the distributor of plumbing, HVAC, PVF and industrial products.

Located 15 miles east of La Crosse, WI, the 308,000-square-foot is set to finish by the first quarter of 2025. Once opened, the new DC is poised to support First Supply’s presence in Western Wisconsin.

“Today we move dirt. Next year this time we move boxes. We move products. We move forward,” First Companies President & CEO Katie Poehling Seymour shared in a news release.

The company first announced plans for the facility on March 25.

Pictured L-R: Family members Todd Restel, Chief Financial Officer, Joe Poehling, Chairman Emeritus, and Katie Poehling Seymour, President & CEO. (Photo by Jordana Synder Photography, courtesy of First Companies)

First Companies noted that the new DC is well-positioned for seamless freight distribution, with convenient access to highways, railways and water cargo facilities.

“We’re really proud of this project because we have 100 employees in the La Crosse region today and over the next decade, we’ll be doubling that number of employees.” Poehling Seymour added. “My family came to the Driftless area in 1855 and we have not left since. This has been a place for us to build our families, build our community and truly build our business that’s grown into 650 employees in nine states, in over 52 locations, and now here we are with the newest one that we’ll be starting today.”

First Companies has 52 locations throughout the U.S. upper Midwest, including 28 First Supply distribution branches; 5 First Waterworks branches; 1 Central Distribution Center; 14 Gerhard’s Kitchen, Bath and Lighting store; and 4 Kohler Signature Stores. The company has over 650 employees.

Hear more on Poehling Seymour’s business philosophy on the MDM Podcast from April 2023.

In 2023, MDM Executive Editor Mike Hockett did a deep dive on First Companies. Check out the Distributor Spotlight feature here.

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