Wholesale & Distribution International - Winter 2018 - 29
JTH LIGHTING ALLIANCE
maintain and have a strong relationship with the construction
community," Beaman stresses. "Our job is to represent bestin-class independent manufacturers."
In return, Beaman notes its wholesale partners bring a
"strong relationship" with the construction community, specifically electrical contractors. "Together we work both sides
of the project, and as long as we're communicating effectively
and exchanging data in a timely manner projects are completed
efficiently," he explains.
Although Beaman and Kirkhoff acquired JTH Lighting Alliance
last spring, the two have worked for the company for nearly five
years. In that time the duo has brought more manufacturers in
who are cost effective, which allows the Apple Valley, Minn.based company to compete more effectively. "A lot of our efforts in the last five years have been to represent more aggressively priced products," Beaman says.
JTH Lighting Alliance has also doubled the size of its company in not only volume, but also employees. Today, it has 42
employees - up from 17 a couple years ago - and four offices located in Iowa (two), Minnesota and South Dakota. JTH Lighting Alliance will add another Iowa location soon and is looking
to expand further.
"We've never really expanded our geographical territory,
but our growth came through marketshare," Principal Jon
Kirkhoff says. "Rob has done a great job of growing our Iowa
marketshare. We have grown in North and South Dakota,
Minnesota and Wisconsin as well because we've added more
people there. This has allowed us to take marketshare from
Kirkhoff also attributes the company's significant growth to
JTH Lighting Alliance's unique independent manufacturer's
representative model. "We aren't affiliated with a conglomerate and this is resonating strongly with our clients," he says.
"They are starting to see that as conglomerates continue to
grow and strengthen themselves it may not serve them as well
today as it did 10 years ago.
"This is because they are now - independent manufacturers - being pushed to the side," he continues. "With JTH, they
don't have to buy in to work with us. We will devote the appropriate amount of time as well. Our key manufacturers get equal
time-share and mind-share from us."
"We've built such a great portfolio that we can really provide
solutions to all aspects of business from specification and higher-end products to cost-effective items," Beaman adds.
Additionally, Kirkhoff notes that JTH Lighting Alliance not
only needs to be nimble and agile, but also have a proactive
mindset instead of a reactive one.
"We have to communicate with our design and distribution
partners and their contractor partners to understand their
needs, be it for next week or next year," he says.
Ultimately, Beaman and Kirkhoff note that they are most
proud of seamlessly transitioning into the leadership of JTH
Lighting Alliance, but more importantly, maintaining the reputation and integrity John Hartley started. "We intend to keep
the business as one of the most highly respected agencies,"
Kirkhoff says. "We will remain ethical and do the right thing for
Additionally, the two see JTH Lighting Alliance being an industry leader and providing the most cutting-edge solutions. "I
look forward to having our agency be an influencer in this business model," Beaman says, noting the company values service
"The sales will come as long as you're serving your customer," he says. "We've been able to more than double the amount
of business and grow our headcount. We're also proud of our
culture. It's important that the people who work for JTH
have the ability to be professionally and personally fulfilled.
Whether they want to continue doing the same job or grow
and challenge themselves in different ways, being in a position to help nurture and encourage, that is a neat thing." q
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