‘I think we’re on the right track’

Sunday, September 30, 2007

MIDDLETOWN, N.Y. ­– With its new 80,000-square-foot distribution center Complete Medical Supplies can now, more than ever, offer more and more of the same, said company President Seth Klein.
“I think we are on the right track,” Klein said. “I think we are going to continue to grow by offering more popular items and more hard-to-find items.”
Since opening in 1988, Complete has carved out a nice niche—averaging an annual growth rate of 20%— catering to the needs of medical equipment providers (65% of the wholesaler’s business) pharmacies and med-surge providers. In particular, company leaders go out of their way to make it as simple as possible for providers to consolidate their purchasing with Complete, Klein said.
The new warehouse, which opened in August, makes it easier than ever to do that. It includes a new conveyor system and stacking equipment, and with additional storage space (the old warehouse covered just 25,000 square feet), Complete can order larger product shipments.
“In the smaller location, we were so packed with merchandise that items were piled on top of items, and it became very inefficient,” he said.
In all, Complete offers 12,000 products covering most categories. The company has a robust drop-ship program. It also allows providers to purchase by the box and not the case. Most orders more than $500 receive free shipping.
“We are so diverse in our product line,” Klein said. “Most of the products you buy from us could be purchased elsewhere, but you may have to go to 25 companies to do that.”
In fact, Complete’s stock of hard-to-find products—for example: a talking thermometer; a clear plastic playing card holder; large face-playing cards; and night-vision glow tape—are often cash items that help providers boost retail sales in an era of dwindling reimbursement.
“We hope to take advantage of the provider needing these unique products, and while they are ordering them, they’ll see that our prices on the commodity products are extremely competitive and add them on,” Klein said.