Saturday, July 9, 2011

Column V2.10 - Scrapping parts; Left & Right 6/30/11

So we mentioned the continuing slide… some things just made no sense and some things were simply a difference in corporate philosophies.
For instance; pre-‘merger’ Delta used to hang on to service parts for E-V-E-R. In fact, in over 19 years in Memphis, I can never remember a wholesale reduction in parts inventory of the type that we immediately got exposed to in Jackson. Actually, the first one I remember was after the ‘merger’ was announced and I suppose someone at PC told them to purge some stock. We were filling up tubs with parts that I could personally ID as being from 1970 bench-top tools. We probably scrapped (a business term meaning- throwed in the trash bin) 6 or 7, 3x4x3size tubs of parts. Would we have ever sold them? Who knows, but it’s a good example of Delta’s concern for those tool buyers who love their older units and wanted to keep them running. On the opposite side of the coin, Porter-Cable had no qualms at all about tossing every service part that they had not sold a certain amount of during the year. It was almost funny. We got to Jackson and one of the first projects we had to do was go thru our parts sales record and see what we sold and quite literally, if we had not sold 5 of that part in the past year, we had to scrap them and discontinue offering it… and here we (Delta guys) thought we had done such a great job getting rid of old parts before we came to Jackson… oh, well…so, we did that…and 5, 18-wheeler trailers later…yes, FIVE… we had a mess of parts that were going to the scrap yard.
Fortunately, I had a boss who would listen to me at the time and I told him this was ‘cutting our nose off to spite our face’…but what to do? Well, the timing was good in that I had just met a fellow in Richmond, IN and he was a stay-at-home-dad looking for something to do. We discussed it and he created his own business selling discontinued Delta parts, from what we GAVE him. Yep, those 5 trailer loads of parts. I don’t recall who paid the freight, but I think it was PC-Delta. Anyway, John had a nice racket for a while. When we discontinued a part, we shipped the remaining inventory to him and he sold them to whoever sent him some money.
This went along well until Black& Decker took over. They narrowed their criteria down to having sold 10 or 15 of that part during the year, so they ‘purged’ 8 more trailer loads and thankfully, they were sent right to John, per our agreement.

I’ll let you know how that worked out next week.

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