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Orgill Helps Grayco Recover After Hurricanes

Whether local homeowners or contractors need to build a home, complete a DIY project or find some new decor for their house, they know who to turn to: Grayco Inc.

The company boasts retail stores, wholesale lumberyards, window and door showrooms and a millwork operation throughout its multiple locations in South Carolina and Georgia.

“We really operate as two different businesses—one is our retail stores, and the other is our lumberyards, which include the millwork business and specialty engineered windows and doors,” says owner Herb Gray. “We can give you everything you need to build a house, and then all the products you need to decorate it inside.”

The hardware stores have a full line of hardware, as well as home decor, paint, and lawn and garden.

“We have some unique niches in our hardware stores,” says Gray. “We have a number of interesting products in our home decor section, and we even offer a wedding registry service. We’re able to bring in new products as the market dictates, so you never know what you might find.”

There For Their Customers
Grayco and Orgill partnered more than 20 years ago, and it’s easy for Gray to give a list of reasons why he enjoys working with the distributor. One item at the top of the list is Orgill’s availability and willingness to help during tough times.

With locations in South Carolina and Georgia, Grayco stores are in an area of the country where hurricanes are common. Grayco has had its own dealings with a couple of those storms over the past several years, including Hurricane Matthew in 2016 and Hurricane Irma in 2017.

Gray says he was fortunate that none of the businesses locations sustained more than minor damage during each of the storms—“we had some flooding and a bit of damage from a falling tree,” he says—but many of his customers weren’t so lucky.

They needed product to help clean up, and Gray says he knew he could rely on Orgill to provide his business with those items.

“Orgill was on call for us 24/7 and had a truck ready for us whenever we needed it,” he says. “That helped us keep our shelves stocked.

“Since we were lucky enough to not have to do much to clean up our stores, we were able to spend that time focusing on our customers and helping them with their cleanup,” he says.

So Much to Offer
Aside from help during emergency situations, Gray appreciates Orgill’s products, pricing and more.

“They offer such flexibility in all their dealings, and we like their product selection,” he says. “When we converted, they really took the time to understand our market, and they’d tailor our inventory to fit that, which we really appreciated.”

Gray says the company has used, and continues to use, a number of Orgill’s retail programs, such as Market Driven Retailing and Retail Pricing, to help him target his customer base and ensure he’s offering competitive pricing to everyone who walks in the door.

“Orgill’s pricing program has been such a big help on our inventory, and we’ve found certain product lines we really enjoy working with,” he says. “Orgill makes the whole process very no-hassle.”

He also appreciates the work of his sales rep, John Patrick, and the number of opportunities he finds at Orgill’s biannual Dealer Markets.

“John is really like an extension of our Grayco family,” he says. “He keeps us up to date on new products and is very hands on any time we’re considering switching out any part of our product selection. He also has helped us in the past with store design.”

Gray says he and his team go to every Dealer Market. He works with Patrick ahead of time to plan any purchases he needs to make, then takes advantage of some of the special Market-only pricing to save on those purchases. By buying in advance of the show, he can spend more time on the floor, checking out new products and trends.

“There’s so much to see at the shows, so I want to make sure I have as much time as possible to visit all the different areas of the Market floor,” he says.

About Liz Lichtenberger

Liz is the special projects editor for Hardware Retailing magazine. She reports on news and trends, visits retailers, and attends industry events. She graduated from Xavier University, where she earned a degree in English and Spanish and was a member of the swim team. Liz is a Louisville, Kentucky, native who lives in Indianapolis with her husband and two children. She enjoys swimming, reading, doing home improvement projects around her house and cheering on her two favorite basketball teams, the Kentucky Wildcats and the Xavier Musketeers.

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