Homecare DSD: Direct delivery

Saturday, February 28, 2009

Lucien Campolo hopes to do for HME what he says the soft drink industry did for Pepsi and Coke.

Campolo, CFO and director of sales for ALC, a lift chair manufacturer in Germantown, Wis., has a business idea that involves going store-to-store unannounced, selling equipment like scooters and rollators to providers out of box trucks.

“When an industry becomes commoditized, the way to stand apart and succeed is personal service,” he said.

In January, Campolo and Dan Smeltzer, CEO of ALC, were trying to round up investors for Homecare DSD (stands for direct-store-delivery).

Eventually, Campolo envisions Homecare DSD as “a business opportunity for route owners.”

“It’s like a franchise, but it’s not, because there won’t be ongoing fees,” Campolo said. “We’ll sell them a system, give them their first 25 accounts and then they’ll act as distributors.”

Because “route owners” are invested, they’ll work harder to sell their products, Campolo said.

“When you hire sales reps, you never know what their motivational level is going to be,” he said.

Manufacturers like ActiveCare Medical and Prairie View Industries (PVI) have expressed interest in having Homecare DSD carry their products.

“With the economy the way it is, we’re certainly looking at new ways to do business,” said John Waldrep, plant manager at PVI, a manufacturer of portable access ramps in Fairbury, Neb.