Wholesale & Distribution International - Spring 2016 - 98


DURABLE

B&D INDUSTRIAL
www.bdindustrial.com / Headquarters: Macon, Ga. / Employees: 315 / Specialty: Industrial products and services /
Ben Nations, vice president: "We empower people. We celebrate their entrepreneurial spirit."

Staying On Point
B&D Industrial stays true to its founder's vision. BY BOB RAKOW

B&D Industrial aims to empower its people and
celebrate their entrepreneurial spirit.

B

The company expanded into Atlanta
in 1956. Andy Nations became president
of Bearings and Drives in 1983, and his father served as chairman of the board until
he passed away in 2006.
Ben Nations and Brian Davis, Andy's
nephews, joined the company in the early 2000s after spending many summers
working in the warehouse and inside
sales. Both held several positions before
becoming vice presidents.
Although both Nations and Davis did
not have the opportunity to work closely
with their grandfather, they understand
his goals for the company. "My grandfather had a vision," Nations says. "He
wanted to provide for families and help
people make a living. He wanted to provide opportunities for people while providing top-notch products and services
for area businesses and customers."

SERVICE A DIFFERENTIATOR
&D Industrial's simple yet

powerful corporate philosophy is
nothing more than a slight twist
on the golden rule. "We treat our customers the way we want to be treated," President and CEO Andy Nations says.
Andy's father, John Nations, founded
the company upon that axiom in 1947
when he started Bearings and Drives -
the oldest and original B&D Industrial
company. Today, B&D Industrial is the
corporate umbrella for three specialized
divisions: B&D Technologies, B&D Service and Scale Systems. The company recently celebrated a milestone with sales
topping the $100 million mark.

98 www.wdimagazine.com Spring 2016

The three divisions have more than 30
locations in Georgia, Florida, Tennessee, South Carolina, North Carolina and
Louisiana. This allows B&D Industrial to
provide advantageous in-stock products
with inventories and repair services customized to local industries.

COMPANY BEGINNINGS
John Nations grew up working in his father's sawmill business during the depression. He opened Bearings and Drives
after purchasing a small business in
Griffin, Ga., for $9,000. He relocated the
business in 1950 to Macon, Ga., which remains the corporate headquarters today.

The creation of B&D Service illustrates
B&D Industrial's commitment to its employees and customers, Nations says. The
division was started when an employee
began doing service work for a single customer, Nations recalls. The success and
demand for this industrial work ultimately led to the creation of B&D Service.
"This employee saw a niche opportunity through a customer's problem that
he was able to solve," Nations says. "We
empower people. We celebrate their entrepreneurial spirit. He saw a valuable
opportunity to help a customer."
The approach is the main reason the
company has so little turnover, Nations


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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Wholesale & Distribution International - Spring 2016

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