It's All About "What's Going On" in Our Lansing Facility
Left: Nate Ovenhouse, Center: Darren Stewart, Right: Pat Kavanagh
Darren, our Branch 10 regional manager, is an 11 year veteran in the fluid power industry. Known as a problem solver to many of his customers, Darren always seems to have a solution to even the most difficult problems, be it in fluid conveyance, air systems, or couplings and connections. As FCI's pioneer in the Lansing market, Darren leads the charge in sales and service to our valued customers.
With over twenty years in the fluid power business, Pat is our Lansing manager. Pat has done his due diligence – inside sales, outside sales, purchasing, inventory control, warehouse management – he's seen and done it all. Known to many as “His Highness of Hoses”, Pat has a wide knowledge of hose and fittings of all types, and is especially strong in metric connectors and industrial hose applications. A strong emphasis on customer service has made Pat a valuable partner with our customers and a strong leader as the Lansing operation continues to grow.
Our youngest team member, Nate is an experienced hose assembly man, with a keen knowledge and expertise of the Eaton Weatherhead hydraulic line. Trained to serve all functions of hose assembly processes, both hydraulic and industrial, Nate is a vital asset to the success of FCI's Lansing operation.
Lansing's Eaton Port-to-Port Store
The Lansing branch has become one of the fastest growing businesses in the Lansing area. Focusing on high pressure hydraulic hose assemblies, fittings, and adapters, this branch is expanding it's customer base at an incredible rate, which is remarkable when you consider it's humble beginnings.
In 2008 Eaton Hydraulics, parent company to Weatherhead hose and fittings, came to FCI management and proposed they start a branch in Lansing to support existing business here. Lansing had a strong Weatherhead presence for over forty years, but did not have an authorized distributor since 2004. Since FCI Grand Rapids was a Premier Distributor and only 60 miles away, the choice seemed logical. Unfortunately, the economic downturn during that time made Eaton's proposal difficult to embrace, but the opportunity and the challenge to get a foothold during the toughest of times was accepted. In 2009 the building on S. Creyts road in Lansing was leased.
The operation languished during the first few years, serving mostly as a warehouse and inventory transfer hub between the two branches. Then Pat was brought on board, both to help support Darren's sales efforts, and with a mission to open an Eaton Port to Port retail store. In less than a year and a half the walk in store became a reality and immediately took off. It propelled retail sales to numerous industries, while allowing Darren the freedom to pursue more business opportunities in the Lansing area.
With the addition of Nate as counter man, the three have achieved a thriving enterprise that continues to impress the Grand Rapids management team, and has gotten the attention of Eaton corporate as well. FCI Automation is proud to have created such a strong, productive, and prolific branch operation, and appreciates the support of the Lansing industrial community.