Garnett Component Sales Inc.
Garnett Component Sales provides OEMs with highly engineered components used in a variety of applications and industries.
By Jim Harris
When manufacturers in the southeastern United States need a highly engineered part or component, they look to Garnett Component Sales Inc. “Our professionalism, industry knowledge and geographic footprint set us apart,” says Tommy Garnett, president and CEO of the Wake Forest, N.C.-based manufacturer’s representative agency. “We are highly sophisticated, and can offer our sales representatives and clients benefits that perhaps other agencies in this region cannot.”
The company has outside sales representatives located throughout its seven-state territory of Virginia, North and South Carolina, Tennessee, Georgia, Alabama and Kentucky; as well as in Mexico. In addition to its headquarters in Wake Forest, N.C., Garnett Component Sales operates branches in Duluth, Ga.; Greenville, S.C.; Nashville; and Guadalajara, Mexico. Being located near many of its clients allows sales representatives to respond to customers on a timely basis in person as well as through e-mail or by phone, Garnett adds.
Garnett Component Sales specializes in selling custom engineered electromechanical components to OEMs in more than 20 industries including the aerospace, medical, military, automotive and industrial sectors. “We don’t sell out of a catalog. Our market niche is highly engineered made to print mechanical component requirements to the OEM community,” Garnett says.
The company’s clients provide it with engineered drawings, which Garnett Component Sales then takes to one of the manufacturers it represents to produce the part using specialized equipment. Although Garnett Component Sales does not design components, it works closely with its customers and the manufacturers of the parts it provides to ensure they operate properly. Components sold by the company can be manufactured on a one-time or continuous basis. “We offer design for manufacturability engineering support and expertise for how the part can be most efficiently run on a specified piece of equipment.”
Examples of the parts sold by the company to OEMs include fittings and pneumatic components used within larger assemblies. Many of these assemblies have safety-critical applications. Garnett Component Sales supplies parts directly to Tier I suppliers to automaker OEMs, as well as to Tier II and Tier III suppliers. Parts and components sold by the company meet several industry standards including ISO, TS, FDA and AS 9100 certifications.
Customer diversification is one of the company’s strengths. “When the automotive industry went through the economic downturn, we actually grew,” Garnett says. “We don’t want to be too heavily invested in just one industry. The automotive sector is now our largest customer base, but we purposely work in other industries to stay diversified.”
Garnett Component Sales has diversified and rapidly grown since Tommy Garnett started his namesake organization in 1992. Previously, Garnett worked as a golf professional and was a member of the PGA of America.
Being a manufacturer’s representative is far different from his prior occupation, but Garnett was drawn into the business because of his family legacy. “I was exposed to the manufacturing industry as a young man and understood the business, which my father had worked in for nearly his entire career,” he says.
The company communicates closely with the manufacturer and the OEMs who use the components it sells. This includes using a consumer relationship management (CRM) system to process and fulfill orders. The CRM used by the company is specifically tailored for manufacturer’s representatives, Garnett says. Garnett Component Sales also uses an entrepreneurial operating system (EOS) in its strategic planning.
Technology helps the company keep up with the major changes it has seen in the market during its 25 years in business. “Now more than ever, we see our business as being in a global marketplace. With the advent of the internet, people today have the ability to source parts in Asia, India and Europe, which makes it very cost competitive,” Garnett says. “We compete by utilizing new and innovative equipment for better effeciencies as well as VA/VE cost reduction initiatives.”
Garnett credits his employees for Garnett Component Sales’ ongoing success. “I am most proud of the people and the team we’ve assembled, as well as our ability to give back to employees through ongoing training and employee benefits,” he says. “The way we take care of and treat our employees is important to me. We are a small business, so we treat each other like family and take care of one another.”