IBT Industrial Solutions announced today that it has officially acquired Sheppard Supply Co. in Springfield, Missouri. IBT will continue to service Sheppard Supply’s former customers with its maintenance, repair, and operations (MRO) supplies and engineering solutions.
“We’re incredibly excited about this opportunity,” said Jeff Cloud, Regional Manager for IBT. “We want to support their customer base and take care of their needs.”
Sheppard Supply customers can now take advantage of IBT’s 8,300 sq. ft. Springfield facility, located at 1358 E. Chestnut Expressway in Springfield, Missouri. IBT offers more than 1 million industrial products from 3,000 vendors—as well as engineering and inventory management services—to companies across the U.S. in manufacturing, food processing, packaging, bottling, aggregate, and power generation.
“Any time two independent supply companies merge, it’s a good thing,” said Cloud. “It gives customers more options, and makes independents healthier and stronger to compete against ‘big box distributors.’”
Connected Through IDC
Cloud and colleague Rick Gerling, another Regional Manager at IBT, learned of the opportunity through IDC, the Independent Distributors Cooperative. Both companies are members. When IDC learned that Sheppard Supply was looking for a buyer, they referred the owners to IBT.
Dennis Sheppard, one of two sons of original owner James Sheppard, felt that the sale to IBT was mutually beneficial.
“I have heard of IBT my whole life, growing up in my dad’s business,” Sheppard said. “I’ve been involved in buying and selling lots of properties over the years in my role as an attorney, and this process went about as smoothly as it can go. It was very straightforward working with IBT.”
His brother Stephen Sheppard agreed. “IBT understood our situation, and were very flexible in working with us,” he said. “We received honest, straightforward communication throughout the process.”
“This was a great match for us, because we are both long-standing, family-run businesses,” Cloud added. “This merger made perfect sense.”
50 Years of History
Sheppard Supply was founded in 1963 by Dennis and Stephen’s father, James Sheppard, and partner Jim Noggle. The company provided construction supplies, industrial supplies, and power transmissions to sawmills, manufacturing companies, and food processors in and around the Springfield region. The elder Sheppard bought out partner Noggle in the 1970’s, but passed away in 2002.
“When dad died, there was never really a logical successor,” said Stephen. “The existing team managed the store through the economic downturn of 2008, but then in 2012, the difficult decision was made to close the business and sell it.”
Sale of Assets
IBT purchased the inventory, customer accounts, and intellectual property for the Missouri-based business. Much of the inventory will transition to IBT’s Springfield office. Sheppard Supply had five employees at the time of purchase.
“We are currently interviewing staff for reassignment at IBT,” said Rick Gerling. “I am confident we can form a plan to move their employees.”
More Purchases Ahead for IBT
Cloud said that this transaction is an important building block for IBT’s future growth. He hopes to find more opportunities like this one.
“We’re very interested in making other purchases like this one, and we are actively looking for other great pairings with independent industrial distributors,” Cloud said.