As seen in the Tried & True Summer 2021 issue
Pennsylvania civic leader Dr. Benjamin Rush was a physician, politician, humanitarian, educator and one of the historymakers who helped pen then added his signature to the Declaration of Independence. Born in 1746, Dr. Rush was the figurehead Rush County and the town of Rushville, Indiana were named for. It’s also where you’ll find Hoeing Supply, Inc.
While in high school, Kevin Hoeing began working at what was once a neighborhood plumbing supply shop. In the 1980s, Hoeing had the opportunity to purchase the business from his predecessor. A new business was born, and what a metamorphosis it’s had over the last thiry years. The company now serves Southcentral and Southeastern Indiana with product lines including plumbing, electrical, HVAC, cabinets, countertops, appliances, lighting, fans and—of course—drainage.
Rob Ash began his career at the shop thirty-five years ago by stocking shelves and delivering products to customers. Kyle Tressler joined the team in 2006. “I married into the family business,” Tressler laughs referring to his wife, Anne, Hoeing’s daughter. In 2012, Mr. Hoeing hung up his sales hat and Ash and Tressler took over the business. It’s been the perfect match for the resourceful duo who have a relationship that’s based on respect, loyalty and camaraderie.
Company responsibilities are divided not by rank and employee number, but by the philosophy that if you have time to lean, then you have time to clean. “We all do a little bit of everything at Hoeing Supply. We don’t consider ourselves experts in one area because we’re all willing to do a little bit of everything when customers walk through the door,” Ash shares. He adds, “Things like stocking and sweeping aren’t delegated here. If you’re not busy, then it’s time to stock shelves or grab a broom.”
Business is bustling and booming for these Fratco supply partners with stores in Rushville and Greensburg. There’s a sentimentality when the duo speak about the simultaneous growth of their business and Fratco’s. It’s a journey they are proud of. “Steve Overmyer visited several times to check in with us, make sure all was well and the pipe being delivered was up to par. That evolved into Chris taking over the family business and investing in its growth. Fratco remains a practical company that continually introduces new and innovative products, with a focus on customers. At Hoeing Supply, Inc., we listened to customers’ needs and grew our business yet remained a name you can depend upon. It’s a journey we understand and know quite well, just like Fratco,” says Ash.
That’s just the tip of the iceberg when the partners discuss why they remain loyal Fratco customers. They trust the product and the company that crafts it. “Fratco is a premier brand,” Tressler shares. “It doesn’t matter who we talk to—contractors buying product or farmers with pipe installed on their land—they know the Fratco name, they understand the quality and that makes our jobs a lot easier.
“There’s a mutual respect between us and Fratco,” Ash adds when asked why Fratco is the brand he trusts.
“We try to provide the best customer service possible. If there’s an issue or problem, Fratco is the first to stand behind what they sell and make it right.”
As a manufacturing leader, Fratco retains that personal touch their clients have relied on for decades. From their humble beginnings in Francesville, Indiana, to expanding into four locations dotted along the Midwest, it’s important they maintain that hometown-feel. That comes with building relationships, and sometimes finding ways to surprise clients—in a good way. “Our Fratco sales rep is a magician!” Ash laughs. “When we have an emergency or what I call a ‘need-pipe-now’ order, Fratco always makes pipe appear. Once, we had a Friday morning order that was slated for Monday delivery because that was the fastest they could make it happen. Friday afternoon, hours after hanging up the phone, in rolls the Fratco truck with our Monday order. We don’t question how they make things happen, but they definitely know how to pull off surprises.”
From their regular delivery driver who always stays for a cup of joe before hitting the road, to their sales rep, Brendan, who grew up in the ag and water drainage industries, the knowledge, generosity and pride the Fratco team has shown Ash and Tressler are attributes they carry into their work ethic and company values too. “When I think about what stands out about Fratco—the attributes that make them who they are—I just hope our customers would say the same things about us,” Tressler says. From the longevity of their business and unlimited potential ahead, cheers to a blue-skied journey ahead for the entire team at Hoeing Supply, Inc and the communities they serve.