Service Category: Sales growth winner

CEOs need to recognize when the time is right for their company to grow. Senthil Kumar, CEO of Akron-based S&V Industries Inc., says recognizing that opportunity was how he increased his company’s numbers.

“Our customers are large companies looking to grow their business by reducing their costs, so we were a very key part of that value chain,” he says. “We brought down our customers’ costs, and they’re able to increase their market share, and thereby, we get the benefit of it.”

Incorporated in 1993, S&V is a marketing agent and logistic solution provider for major U.S. original equipment manufacturers who provide manufacturing parts produced by global suppliers. The company has more than 50 OEM customers in the United States, Canada and Mexico, and partners with more than 25 manufacturing facilities in India and China.

The company has grown from four employees and $4.4 million in revenue in 2001 to 15 employees and $20.9 million in revenue last year. Kumar expects sales growth of 20 percent for 2006.

How does Kumar make decisions regarding growth? He looks at his company’s history.

“We sell a range of products so we know where we are comparative and where there is some differentiation with the competition,” he says. “It’s just a process of elimination. We try to put more and more focus on the areas which are successful and grow them.”

Vertical integration of his products is another way Kumar sets his company apart. Serving as a one-stop shop makes S&V Industries a valued partner with his customers.

“Let’s say a purchasing department is one of our customers,” he says. “Compared to five years ago, the number of buyers is reduced, and each one is buying more so they depend on companies like us, which have the full range of products and services so they are able to get more done with fewer resources.”

Creating solid customer relationships is essential.

“You want customers for the long term,” Kumar says. “It takes a long time to get a customer on board, and once you get the customer, you want to retain the customer. It’s not just selling, but it’s a value proposition that has to keep increasing.”

HOW TO REACH: S&V Industries Inc., (330) 253-1986 or