Nobody currently at The Part Works remembers exactly how our founder, Rick Johnson, negotiated becoming a parts dealer for Kohler. It was early in our history when The Part Works was a fledgling family-owned specialty supplier. Kohler was an established, industry leading (and still family owned) plumbing manufacturer. Everybody at The Part Works knows how vital that relationship has been to our now 41 year old company.
The story gets interesting around 2012, when a surprise visitor showed up at our will call counter. The national service parts manager was in town doing a training session with the local Kohler representative, let’s call him “Brad, from Kohler”. During Brad from Kohler’s visit he had scheduled some time to do surprise drop-ins with some of the Kohler suppliers. Seeing the volume of repair parts in our will call area, he asked for a tour, which we were happy to oblige. While touring our facility, Brad from Kohler was shocked to learn that all of our volume with Kohler was service parts, and that we were not afixture/faucet dealer.
Over the following weeks and months, as the conversation developed, Katie Parris our President, and daughter of original owners Rick and Sandy Johnson, was invited to the Kohler plant, where she explained the value of having an MRO provider in order to service the massive and diverse retrofit and replace market segment. She also expressed that without access to the Kohler commercial product line, our staff were not able to recommend Kohler replacement products, in cases where repair parts were not an appropriate solution. Thanks to the ongoing dialogue, Kohler supplied The Part Works with several custom branded marketing pieces, allowing us to create a Kohler online store on our website.
In December, 2019 Kohler invited us to join the family of Kohler authorized OEMdistributors, as one of the first true MRO Commercial dealers, specializing in not just Commercial products, but enhanced by being an OEM parts dealer.
While the past 12 month have provided multiple distractions from this exciting new program, The Part Works has been hard at work, hand-in-hand with Kohler to plan the right go-to-market strategy. Highlighting the family of Kohler Commercial/Healthcare products, including novel solutions such as the ModFlex adjustable toilet, which converts a wall hung toilet to a floor mount toilet.
From one family owned business to another, we are thrilled to go boldly into the future with “The Bold Look of Kohler, now at The Part Works.”
“A group of people or things that are related by common characteristics, features, or properties.“ --dictionary.com