Austin, TX - Companies in the US industrial supply wholesalers industry distribute supplies for machinery and equipment used in the manufacturing, oil and gas, and warehousing industries. Major companies include Applied Industrial Technologies, Industrial Distribution Group, McJunkin Red Man, MSC Industrial Direct, and W.W. Grainger.
The US industrial supply wholesalers industry includes about 9,000 establishments (single-location companies or branches of multi-location companies) with combined annual revenue of about $60 billion.
Domestic demand for the US manufacturing sector, an indicator of demand for industrial supply wholesalers, is forecast to have a low-growth rate in the next two years. Key growth drivers are manufacturing activity and the overall health of the economy.
Because industrial supply distributors sell products used in maintenance, repair, operations, and production (MROP), the industry is sometimes called the MRO supply or MROP supply industry.
Demand is closely tied to the level of US manufacturing production. Because many operating costs are fixed, profitability depends on operational efficiency, particularly inventory management. Smaller companies can compete effectively by providing specialized supplies or superior service (delivery service and product expertise). Large distributors with a network of warehouses and outlets can maintain a lower inventory/sales ratio. The industry is concentrated: the 50 largest companies generate about 50% of revenue.
Products, operations and technology
Major products include abrasives, strapping, tapes, and inks (30% of sales); mechanical power transmission supplies (17%); industrial containers and supplies (15%); industrial valves and fittings (12%); and bushings and bearings (10%). Other products include tools, motors, fasteners and cleaning supplies.
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