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How has being in the automotive business affected Lockmasters?
Our timing couldn’t have been better. Emulating what we had done in the past, we teaming up with the folks who knew automotive locksmithing. We introduced the PUREAUTO™ seminar series and began offering quality training around the country at about the same time transponders hit the market. Then, in January of 2003 we acquired Tech-Train® Productions and were fortunate to have you (Steve Young and the Tech-Train staff) join our team. This combination of staff, instructors and new products just took off and hasn’t stopped.
Are there some product lines carried by Lockmasters that you think more locksmiths should know about?
We distribute most major lines in our industry niche, but what is probably not known is the amount of products and lines that are produced exclusively for Lockmasters, like the Magnum® drill rigs, Tech-Train® products, Hardplate for government security containers, STC doors for classified areas, Yale safe deposit locks, LockOne® high security locks and a long list of other automotive and safe tools.
Not too long ago, Lockmasters, Inc. split into two separate companies, Lockmasters, Inc. and Lockmasters Security Institute. How did that come about?
I think in our industry it is common to have families working together. My grandfather worked for his father, my dad worked for his father and I too worked for my father; it is a family business.
Another thing that also follows tradition is that the elder never stopped working! My dad, Clay, decided, with a little coercion, that it was time to let me venture out on my own in 2005. But of course, he wasn’t ready to retire yet, so we took Lockmasters Inc. and formed two separate independent companies, Lockmasters Security Institute, which dad owns and Lockmasters Inc., the distribution company that I purchased from my father. We both have our own businesses and daily challenges, and we are only 3 miles apart and still have many opportunities to work together. I have been at Lockmasters for just over 20 years and I am definitely looking forward to the next 20 years!
Speaking of the future, what kind of expansion plans do you have?
Well, this past summer, we purchased a 15-acre track in the same industrial park as S&G, LSI and LockNet. This will allow us to combine three of our current locations under one roof. Our plans are to move into this new facility near the end of 2008. It will be 30,000 square feet for office, warehouse and training class rooms, with plans for an additional 30,000 square feet for warehouse and manufacturing as needed.
What do you see in the future for Lockmasters, Inc.?
I know that our growth will continue, but just as in the past, we plan to stay with what we know, and to stay within our market niche. To our customers, this means that we will be a source for more of the products they use every day, and we will also offer them a stream of great new tools and security products.
Distributor Profiles Each year, Locksmith Ledger polls a select group of locksmith distributors on the state of the industry, the advances and challenges faced by their businesses, and future...