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ASA Home   Membership   Education   Advocacy   Networking   Business Intelligence   April 23, 2015

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2015 Legislative Fly-in: An Overwhelming Success
American Supply Association

(L-R) John Altepeter (AO Smith), Kim Hardy
(Chris-More, Inc.), Rep. Jim Cooper (D-TN),
Diane Early (American Pipe & Supply),
and Bob Christensen (Chris-More, Inc.)

It’s not an everyday occurrence for stakeholders from outside of the Washington Beltway to serve as educators for their members of Congress and bring them new information that they might not already know, but that’s exactly what occurred at ASA’s Legislative Fly-in on April 15th. One of the issues most important to distributors is fixing the online sales tax loophole, an issue that’s received increased attention this spring. With the stalled passage of a Marketplace Fairness Act, a new version has been drafted by House Government Oversight Committee Chairman Jason Chaffetz (R-UT).
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Don't Call Us, We'll Call You
American Supply Association

(L-R) Rick Giannini (Milwaukee Valve),
Tom LaGuardia (Milwaukee Valve),
Rebecca Falish (InSinkErator), Rep. Reid
Ribble (WI), Joe Poehling (First Supply),
Kathryn Poehling (First Supply), and Dave
Prahler (First Supply)

One of the greatest measures of a meeting with an elected official is when they finally realize how important an issue is to their constituent and their office takes the time to follow-up. That’s what happened over the weekend to First Supply’s Joe Poehling after he met with Ways and Means Chairman Paul Ryan (R-WI) and his staff last week in Washington. Poehling was called directly by the staffer that he met with after he and other attendees of Wisconsin’s distribution and manufacturing delegation informed them of their interest to grow their Wisconsin businesses. They made clear the need to finally level the playing field between those that sell online only and avoid collecting sales taxes and brick-and-mortar sellers such as ASA’s members. The staff member wanted to reiterate to Poehling Chairman Ryan’s feelings about the legislation as it moved forward in Congress.

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ASA University Now Offers FREE Manufacturer Training
American Supply Association
ASA University is providing Manufacturer training free to ASA's Distributor Members only! Just log in to ASA University and pick the Manufacturer training that is right for you – For FREE! Currently we have training from InSinkErator, IPS Corporation and Sloan with more to come soon! View the courses now!
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YTD Profit Before Taxes Reported Even or Down by Half of PVF Distributors
American Supply Association
ASA member wholesaler-distributors reported a median sales growth of 10.7% for the month ending March 31, 2015, compared to the same month last year. Calendar year-to-date, all respondents reported a median sales increase of 7.6%; however, respondents in the industrial PVF segment reported only a 2.1% increase. The median increase for the trailing 12 months is 7.3% for all respondents. ASA's Monthly Pulse Report provides a regular snapshot of performance for the PHCP and PVF industry. For each month, the participation deadline for wholesaler-distributor members to submit data is typically on the eighth business day of the following month. The participation deadline for the April 2015 report is May 12. Log in to your My ASA to view the full report, or learn how to participate.
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    Do You Know Which Pumps Go with Which Water Wells?
Domestic Water Well Pumps© provides an overview of water wells. The course gives employees the basic knowledge needed to discuss the different types of water wells, principles of pump operation, and the major types of pumps. Employees will learn how to size a pump in terms of lift, capacity and discharge pressure requirements. Definitions of common industry terms, descriptions of the major types of system components, and other information to help employees serve your customers more effectively are provided. READ MORE


    "As a manufacturer, it is great to be part of ASA. It is a very focused and progressive group. To be able to contribute to the growth, professionalism and to assist in achieving ASA's industry goals is huge." – Mike Belanger, Victaulic
Share your 'I AM ASA' with us!

Take Your Leadership Skills to the Next Level
American Supply Association
The Master of Distribution Management Program is a Master's Certification Program that is a one of a kind offering. 100% industry focused – the curriculum was designed by industry experts and veterans so you receive the best Leadership Training that the industry has to offer. The flexible approach to training gives candidates, employers and mentors the ability to work through the curriculum as work demands shift.
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At Network2015, Meet a Pro
American Supply Association
Have you ever thought, "If I could pick their brain for just a minute on this topic ..." or "what would you have done in this situation?" If so, we have a great workshop during Network2015 just for you. At Network2015, we are providing insight and guidance through our Meet the Pros roundtable, focusing on universal topics. Our "Pros" are industry executives who have years of knowledge and experience, and we are gathering together a group of them for one-on-one interaction. Attend this session, and you can engage in conversation, roundtable style, to hear the latest on topics that affect your business. This unique and valuable interaction helps you get the answers to the questions/situations you might be facing on many different topics and provide takeaways that can help you in your business. For more information, to stay connected and to register, visit
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  Cast Iron Soil Pipe and Fittings

AB&I Foundry manufacturers cast iron soil pipe and fittings for storm and sanitary DWV plumbing systems. A US business built on RELIABILITY since 1906 and products with unsurpassed performance and durability. Integrity and Reliability – That’s the AB&I way. Visit AB&I or call (800) GOT-IRON. Free Catalog.


    Finding the Balance: Inventory Turns and Customer Service
Everyone is looking for ways to shore up their cash flow. While some may turn toward reducing headcount, others will look for reductions in inventory. Why not? Inventory is typically the largest asset in a wholesale distribution company. While prudent inventory reductions are always beneficial, we don’t want to throw the baby out with the bathwater. We must recognize that we are sales organizations first and foremost. Presented by Jason Bader, The Distribution Team, participants will learn how to reduce inventory without alienating their loyal customer base. Distributors will learn how to analyze customer needs and make adjustments to their inventory investment. Even in tough economic conditions, we can provide superior customer service through prudent inventory management decisions. Join us for this FREE webinar May 13, at 1 p.m. Central. REGISTER NOW

2015 Distribution & Manufacturing Software Guides Now Available
American Supply Association
In partnership with St. Louis-based Brown Smith Wallace Consulting Group, ASA has released two software guides for 2015. The 25th Edition of the Distribution Software Guide is the most used directory for wholesaler-distributors looking to replace or upgrade their existing business software. The guide provides detailed vendor information including feature matrixes for enterprise distribution and complementary solutions. Also, and in response to market demand, the 9th Edition of the Manufacturing Software Guide continues to meet the unique needs of the manufacturing supply chain community. This guide includes detailed vendor pages, company demographics, product information and a feature matrix. ASA members can find this information via logging into MY ASA at A very limited number of hardcopies are also available upon request sent to
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ESOP Planning: Expand and Grow Your ESOP
Prairie Capital Advisors
Companies with mature Employee Stock Ownership Plans face many challenges that impact their strategic direction, especially as it relates to the impact on the ESOP. This can include balancing competing claims on capital, determining if the ESOP ownership position should change, deciding if the company should make strategic acquisitions and more. For many, they need to know the proper next steps to help expand and grow their ESOPs.
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Read the Latest from Morris Beschloss on USA Today
American Supply Association
This week's news: Is a US Refinery Crisis in the Making? (The Desert Sun)

Want to read more from Beschloss? Click here to go to USA Today for a full archive of past articles.

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How to Help Employees Embrace New Technology
Embracing new office technology can be challenging for many. Even for those who aren't apprehensive about technology, automating a manual process that employees have been accustomed to for years can be overwhelming. With profitability and efficiency among businesses' top priorities, and technology a valuable tool for increasing both, how can business leaders help employees to adopt, and even openly embrace, new technology?
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Truckers Want Feds to Move Faster on Speed Limits
The Hill
The American Trucking Association is calling on the Obama administration to move faster to implement a mandate for electronic speed limit devices on the nation's trucks. The Arlington, Virginia-based group said recently that the Department of Transportation is taking too long to put in a requirement that trucks have devices on-board that will limit their speeds to 65mph to reduce the number of accidents that occur on U.S. roads and highways.
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Total Cost of Ownership: The Challenge of Effective Supply Chain Management
By Frank Wilhelm
Companies are always looking for creative ways to reduce costs and expand profit margins. In some cases, new and innovative approaches are employed. In others, proven but overlooked techniques are being resurrected and applied. The impact of total cost of ownership upon cost reduction and profit elevation among capital-intensive industries is quite significant, yet this approach has been largely missed. Many industries would benefit greatly from the adoption of this concept.
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Missed last week's issue? See which articles your colleagues read most.

    Why the Best Competitors are ASA Members (American Supply Association)
Assume Nothing: 5 Tests Every Manufacturer Should Run Quarterly (IndustryWeek)
Why Your Best Assets are People (Prairie Capitol Advisors)

Don't be left behind. Click here to see what else you missed.


ASA Insights
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Colby Horton, Vice President of Publishing, 469.420.2601
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Bianca Gibson, Executive Editor, 469.420.2611   

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