The company was formed in 1968 as a specialist manufacturers representative firm keying in on the housewares industry. Initial operations covered a limited territory in the Northern Illinois market representing a limited line of products for smaller manufacturers in the field.

During the 1968 - 1974 period, the company developed a substantial base of local and regional retail chain stores and a number of local distributors. Primary business growth during the period came from concentration in the houseware and related domestic softline products groups.

During the company's ten year plan period, 1975 - 1984, a number of key accounts were developed which provided substantial growth in sales and remain as key accounts today. The accounts include firms such as Walgreens, American Drug Stores, Dominicks, Shopko, Mills and Blain Supply, Promotions Unlimited, Menards, Jewel Foods, Roundys, Fleming/Gateway, Wards, Sears, Tru Value and Ace Hardware. Markets were widened to include all of Illinois and Wisconsin.

During the company's second ten-year plan period, 1985 - 1994, product lines represented were broadened to take advantage of the years-long contacts developed with major chain operations. During this time two additional associates joined the firm bringing many years of chain store and related product experience to the company. During the period, a sustained 20% annual growth rate was maintained.

During the current ten-year plan period, 1995 - 2004, the company has sought out key product lines to take advantage of the constant changes and continuing growth in the retail chain operations. During this time an additional associate was brought into the firm and our territory expanded into Minnesota. The accounts added were Target Stores, Snyder Drug, Educational Teaching Aids, United Stationers, Super Valu Foods, Kohl's Foods, and Kohl's Department Stores.

The company has continued to evaluate new methods and techniques, has maintained conversance with evolving retail concepts, and has employed state-of-the-art systems for it's own operations. The company has added computer-automated systems, in house EDI capabilities, fax and advanced telecommunications equipment, and modern management planning and performance review methods to its operations.

The company principal and key associates include:

Marvin Steinlauf

Debbie Irlbacker

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