On May 8, 2013, the IBT branch in Amarillo will celebrate 25 years of service—with a Customer Appreciation & Technology Expo from 9:30 a.m.—1:30 p.m. at the Amarillo Holiday Inn East. All customers are invited.
“We love having this opportunity to show our appreciation to our customers,” said Jeff Cloud, Regional Manager for IBT, who oversees the Amarillo branch. “We like helping our customers learn about the new products that will make their lives easier.”
The Expo will feature a free lunch buffet from 11:00 a.m.–1:30 p.m., along with more than 30 vendors showing off the latest and greatest technology for the maintenance, repair, and operations (MRO) industry. Prizes will be given away, including a 3-lap ride with the Richard Petty Driving Experience at the IBT Tech X 500 tradeshow.
In addition, IBT—Amarillo is offering two training events on the same date: Hydraulic 101 (May 7-9) and Electrical 101 (May 7-9). All training participants are invited to attend the Customer Appreciation & Technology Expo.
Small Team—Long History
Mike Powell, a Senior Account Manager, has worked at the IBT—Amarillo branch since the doors opened on November 1st, 1987. He started only three days before Kelly Holt, now the Store Manager.
“IBT is all about the people,” Holt said. “Part of our value is in the longevity of the people who work here.”
The Amarillo team has four employees, including Holt and Powell. Together, this team of four manages an entire 5,000-sq.-ft. warehouse—and all of the 250 different customers who utilize the facility each year.
Inside Salesperson Jeff Race joined twelve years ago, and Warehouse Specialist Dusty Blocker is the “new guy,” with six years of service.
“We’ve got a great crew here,” said Powell. “Everybody’s been here for several years now, and we all work well together.”
Customers Up to 120 Miles Away
IBT–Amarillo services customers up to 120 miles away, in a region that covers hundreds of square miles of the Texas Panhandle and eastern New Mexico. Amarillo is the largest city in the Panhandle, with a population of 190,695.
“This group travels a great distance to serve our customers,” Cloud said.
As Senior Account Manager, Powell routinely travels long distances to visit customers in every imaginable field, including cattle feeders, copper refineries, beef-packing plants, and ethanol plants. Major clients include Orion Engineered Carbons, Gearn Offshore, Asarco, and Cooper Crouse-Hinds.
And the customers appreciate it. David Harris, the Maintenance Manager and Project Manager at Orion Engineered Carbons, said he’s been extremely pleased with the service provided by Powell and the IBT—Amarillo team. He added that they have been instrumental in helping improve their plant’s uptime.
“Even though they are fifty miles away from our facility in Borger, Texas, they provide us with service twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week—even on holidays,” Harris said. “They’ll just drop whatever they’re doing and come help us.”
Harris added that he likes how IBT is always coming up with new ideas on how to improve their business.
“I called Mike one day and said, ‘We need to redo our parts room,'” Harris said. “Mike said, ‘Sure!’ and helped us develop a numbering system, min/max levels, and even put labels on the shelves for us. We appreciate that service.”
Wide Variety of Services
“It’s a different challenge every day,” Holt said. “We may go from a conveyor project, to a safety project, to a fluid power project. You never know what the next call or email will bring, and that variety keeps me going.”
Customers like Jason Gearn like that flexibility. Gearn is Chief Operations Officer at Gearn Offshore, Inc., and spends much of his time on the floating offshore vessels and well stimulation boats that they service for their customers.
Gearn requires highly specialized motors and variable frequency drives to operate the winches and hose deployment systems they build for customers—and has been frustrated by other suppliers in the past.
“We are on the front line of well stimulation boat technology,” Gearn said. “If we were just buying part numbers, we could buy from anyone—but we’re not. Our items are way too specialized. So for our big-ticket items, we use IBT.”
Gearn said that the Amarillo team has even helped them negotiate crucial changes to engineering and documentation with suppliers, which helps them get the special products and services they need in a timely fashion. It’s this level of service that has kept them coming back to IBT for the past ten years.
“The IBT team in Amarillo is so good, and they bring so much value to us with all of their connections to suppliers,” Gearn said. “They have helped us work through dozens of little challenges to help us grow our business.”
What’s Next for IBT in Amarillo?
“Our goal is to grow the Amarillo business to support future expansion in the north Texas region,” Cloud said. “Right now, we are updating the branch as part of a long-term investment in the market.”
Part of that investment includes refreshing the 5,000-sq.-ft. space with a new look and feel. New paint, carpeting, and rewiring will be completed by May 2013.
“We look forward to many more years of supporting our customers in the Amarillo marketplace,” Cloud added.