Focussed on Growth
A boom in home renovations has put REP Windows and Doors on the growth fast track. With the cumulative effect of lockdowns, supply chain disruptions and natural disasters, it's no wonder that many businesses have experienced something less than steady growth in the last little while.
But that general trend simply doesn't apply to REP Windows and Doors. In fact, the last few years have been a period of rapid growth for the Kingston, Ontario-based company.
"It sounds crazy, but the pandemic was actually good for our business," says owner and founder Rick Garrah. "With so many people staying home and not spending money on things like trips and entertainment, lots of people started spending money upgrading their home and we benefitted directly from that."
And it wasn't just windows and doors fuelling REP's recent growth. The company now offers a wide range of building products and materials for both retail and wholesale customers, but it wasn't always that way. Rick founded the company back in 1992 as a pure wholesaler focusing on windows, doors and exterior products.
"I started out with just me working out of a 5,000-square-foot shop," he recalls. "I even lived in the back of the shop for a while."
Over the years the wholesale business expanded several times, adding partners and moving to ever-larger facilities. In 2012, Rick became sole owner and was joined in the business by his son Patrick, but their wholesale focus remained the same. Two years ago, however, REP turned down an entirely new path when the company became a member of the Sexton Buying Group.
"Sexton has been great for us; our Business Development Manager Suzanne Walsh saw my vision for expanding the business from Day 1," Rick explains. "With the group's support and volume pricing, we had the opportunity to branch out and get into new product lines we never thought of before. That grew the retail side of our business to the point where it's now bigger than the wholesale side for the first time in our history."
Since joining Sexton, REP has added a full line of flooring products, along with insulation and related products, interior trim, interior doors and even a line of tools. Today REP employs 17 people engaged in both sales and installation, and one year ago Rick purchased an additional 14,000-square-foot building to accommodate his new product lines. He has since converted 2,200 square feet of that building into a retail showroom.
"The new showroom is big enough to display all our flooring, as well as two complete sunrooms and our larger folding patio door products."
Sexton has been great for us. Our Business Development Manager, Suzanne Walsh, saw my vision for expanding the business from day one. With the group's support and volume pricing, we had the opportunity to branch out and get into new product lines we never thought of before. That grew the retail side of our business to the point where it's now bigger than the wholesale side for the first time in our history