by Wayne John
Wille Electric Supply Company is proud to announce their 90th anniversary. The distributor, with headquarters in Modesto, also has branches in Stockton and San Leandro.
The company was started in 1922 by Carl Wille (pronounced ‘willy’), a young man from Victoria, Canada, who bought out the electrical department of a local hardware store at the age of 20. He started with a small location on ‘’I” Street in Modesto and provided services such as product repairs as well as selling new products. A couple of moves to larger facilities later landed them in 1969 to their current location on 7th Street. The company added a new location in Stockton in 1983. They grew even larger in 2004 with the acquisition of San Leandro Electric Supply.
They are one of the few and last remaining independent multi-branch distributors left in Northern California. Wille is a true testament to the statement that they hold their own against the large chains and enjoy a successful business model.
Wille is proud of the fact that even through the tough years of the Depression and current/recent recessions that they have never had to lay off any employees. This, along with great corporate stability, has allowed a remarkable retention rate with employees working with the company for decades.
A large and consistent inventory is what has set them apart over 90 years. No matter the state of the economy, they have always maintained their stock levels high. This has resulted in loyal customers that also spans decades.
As an independent distributor, they have the luxury of being able to address issues immediately and act upon them; this as opposed to their competition.
At Wille, they believe in true customer service and maintain an outstanding and large outside sales staff. Sales calls there are not ‘phoned-in’; they believe in the old-fashioned face-to-face meetings that Carl Wille started nearly a century ago.
Today the company is still family-owned and operated. Even with the title, says Larry Robinson, President, “We work together to get the job done. Titles are one thing but the bottom line is servicing the customer.” He, Rob Robinson, VP of Sales and Seth Neumann, VP of Finances all work closely as a team to make the company an exciting place to work as well as a one-stop destination for customers in all industries.
To reach Wille Electric Supply, visit them at www.willeelectric.com or call the Modesto location at 209-527-6800.