Based on their own need for products at great prices, auctioneers Bud Nelson and Joel Orr discovered overstocks, returns, closeouts, liquidations, surplus and salvage, available from major retailers across the Midwest. As a consequence, 18 years ago they founded Continental Wholesale Company, to begin offering these products to retailers, ?for pennies on the dollar.?
Although both men still dabble in auctioneering, Continental has become the tail that wags the dog. It is one of the Midwest?s largest suppliers of closeouts from major retailers and is now expanding nationwide. It has long been devoted to helping its customers succeed through innovative programs that include more than product.
Among the most successful is the company?s TLC program, which it initiated approximately six years ago. TLC stands for Truck Load Concept, but it might also just as well stand for Tender Loving Care, because that?s what the owners provide to customers that subscribe.
There is no franchise fee, and Continental protects its customers? territories to ensure maximum support of the TLC events. ?A truckload will cost between $3,000 and $9,500 per load, depending on its content and what major retailer it comes from,? says Nelson. In addition to supplying the merchandise, these partners also help their customers do a complete set up for a three day truckload sale.
That includes ad slicks, signage and information on locating shelving, floor jacks, tag guns and all of the components necessary to open up the truckloads, tag items and promote and display them. ?We offer full support,? Orr says.
Continental advises its customers to host a truck load sale every month, ?Preferably consistently on the first weekend of each month,? Nelson says. ?That way, shoppers come to expect it, and hundreds of them line up on opening day. It creates a buying frenzy.?
The retailers can adjust pricing to whatever their individual markets will bear, Orr points out. ?A lot of our customers? stores are very, very profitable,? he adds.
While adding to retailers? profits, Orr says the TLC program, particularly in rural areas that are underserved at retail, ?Is a service to the community.? The company has also partnered with organizations for the handicapped, providing jobs and aiding local economies in general.
For more information, contact:
Continental Wholesale Co.
15 Fifth Avenue SE
Hampton, IA 50441
Toll Free: 800-869-7203
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