EPISODE 61 | Launching Success, One Branch At A Time

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The year 2023 has brought along more incredible milestones for City Electric Supply (CES). The top-ten electrical wholesale distributor has further expanded its footprint on the island of Puerto Rico and has opened 12 other locations in eight states.

Successfully opening a CES branch takes time, effort, planning, and a lot of hard work. Thanks to the tenacity and dedication of our team members, each successful launch of every branch ends with a well-deserved grand opening celebration event with vendors and members of the community. 

Having a Vision

One key aspect of launching a successful branch is having a vision. Recently, with the opening of CES Arecibo, Puerto Rico’s second branch after CES Catano, the company has gained more momentum in its investment of growing in the U.S. territory.

“Ultimately, we are trying to open location across the island by continuing to head west,” said CES Senior Regional Manager Mike Bertone.

And with CES Arecibo being 45 minutes from CES Catano, launching more new branches will help provide crucial resources and services to customers in a market that is currently going through the modernization of its electrical infrastructure, since around 97% of Puerto Rico’s electricity is sourced from fossil fuels.

“This is a great point for us to open another location,” Mike added. “As CES opens more branches, we’re going to continue helping existing stores here be successful.”

Restart and Revamp

Another key to launching a successful branch is never being afraid to try again. One such location that experienced this phenomenon is CES Pasadena TX. CES Pasadena TX went through an eight-month relocation and renovation process for its grand re-opening event that happened in early June.

“CES has been part of the Pasadena community for about 15 years now. It’s been exciting to chat with customers and see their faces as our new location has come to life,” said Branch Manager Grant Price.

CES also opened two other nearby branches in the same state.

“Houston is a huge market. The Houston Westchase location is right off the Sam Houston Tollway and will help us connect some existing branches in nearby areas,” said District Manager Daren Thode. “CES South Houston is placed just south of Interstate 10 and is in a perfect location for customers who work on either side of the city.”

Location, Location, Location!

Speaking of the subject of location, another key aspect of launching a successful branch is being in the right place at the right time. CES Prince Frederick in Maryland, CES Petersburg in West Virginia, CES Lawrenceburg in Tennessee, and CES Greenville in Ohio might not be places a person would think of when asked to list a group of hot hub cities throughout the U.S. But, success doesn’t just happen in large markets. Being strategic about a branch’s location is a must. 

“This branch has taken us a while to get everything perfect before opening, but we wouldn’t have it any other way,” said District Manager Dennis Diaz. “We’re excited to have CES Prince Frederick open and ready to go to serve our customers in this market.”

“This Petersburg location will help fill a gap for our customers, and CES can meet new ones in the area as well,” said District Manager Scotty Pratt.

“After several visits to Lawrenceburg and talking with local people, we are excited to open a location here in town,” said District Manager Mike Mosketti. “It’s clear a lot of growth is anticipated in the area, and there’s a lot of opportunity to establish our business here.”

“CES Troy is about 30 minutes east of this Greenville OH location. With Dayton to the southeast, we hope to service new customers in this area and help existing ones save on driving times,” said District Manager Shawn Howard. “Customers can now travel north, south, and west to get over to the Indiana border. We are working to hit a 30-minute, 30-mile radius to serve all our customers to the best of our ability.” 

Starting From Scratch

Whether a branch is built from the ground up, renovated from the inside out, or even rebranded, seeing a store come to life is the most satisfying part of launching a new branch. 

“Our building was an empty shell when we first set eyes on it, but we could see immediately that it was the perfect home for our branch,” said Branch Manager Maxwell George. “The coolest thing was being involved in the process from the beginning and seeing CES Fenton come to life. It has transformed from dirt floors and being an empty shell to a fully stocked and operational branch.”

“In the beginning phases of trying to find our location, it was a bit of a challenge. We spent time looking at buildings, and none really had the needs of an electrical supplier,” said CES Avon Branch Manager Adam Sobat. “I was chatting with some of our customers, and one of them told me about a building across the street from one of them that was available. Our team went and checked it out—and it was a perfect fit.”

Manchester is going to be one of our CES locations that will be a full line electrical distributor and a full plumbing distributor,” said District Manager Travis Williams. “Our team has spent quality time going through existing inventory and prepping this location to re-open within a 60-day turnaround. CES is looking forward to continuing serving everyone in Manchester and the surrounding areas.”

Supporting Customers

But by and large, the most essential part of launching a successful branch is supporting customers.

“I think it’s great to see another location come to the Columbia area. I hope this Irmo location helps our customer base receive materials quicker and that CES can ease any burdens during their workday,” said District Manager Bruce Marvin. 

 “This has been a dream scenario for me. To run a store in my hometown is a wonderful opportunity. I know the place, people, and customer base,” said Branch Manager Korey Harris. “I’m looking forward to seeing what this branch will do to help the customers here in Spring Hill.”

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