Las Vegas — As Hardware Distribution Warehouses Inc. plans its move from Shreveport, La., to Marshall, Texas — just 22 miles to the west — CEO Kenny Beauvais explained that the move was driven by the need for a right-sized, modern distribution center.
It also makes good financial sense, he said. Consolidating its Houston and Shreveport facilities into the Marshall DC is expected to produce direct cost savings in the neighborhood of $1.6 million per year. That's the result of several factors including the new location in a Triple Free Port Zone, the Texas term for no inventory tax.
"From a financial perspective, it's very financially advantageous to our company," Beauvais said.
The announced move to Marshall comes about six months after HDW bought Handy Hardware from World and Main, including its Houston distribution center.
The Houston facility was too large, he said, it proved impractical to reduce it in size. "So we looked for other facilities and we actually located three candidates in Texas. And the Marshall facility was far and above the best. The majority if not all of the Shreveport employees will be able to drive. That really really worked great."
The new facility in Marshall will feature a pallet conveyor to move product from the receiving doors all the way to the main shipping floor, a more efficient method than moving pallets by forklift. Other features include barcode scanning and one lane (out of 13) dedicated to e-commerce.
Beauvais explained the growth and the activity this way: "We have been very fortunate and been at the right place at the right time to take advantage of market opportunities."
The company plans to begin shipments from Marshall by September. And Beauvais emphasized that a smooth transition is job one for the distributor. "We can't have any interruptions," he said. "It has to be ready to completely take over the business."