By Andy Slawetsky – On the campus of Arizona State University, the Flex Technology Group (FTG) hosted its annual sales kickoff event, and with it a chance to boast of their strong 2023 and leading position in the office equipment reseller community as an elite Mega dealer. Flex is one of the few companies in this space that can proudly claims coast-to-coast service in the US, something they mentioned throughout the conference.

With a reported revenue of $434 million, 9% organic growth and a combined organic growth of $75 million over the last two years, CEO Frank Gaspari was on stage telling attendees why FTG is elite. Numbers like these are not commonplace, especially because much of this is coming from old-school print management. “We are at a different level of better,” Frank told those in the audience to wild applause.

Other standout figures include the company’s ability to retain 97% of its customer base, which exceeds 29,000. This is remarkable and speaks volumes about Flex’s commitment to customer satisfaction. A significant part of FTG’s operational success is its reliance on in-house W2 technicians to complete 93% of service calls, a strategic choice that sets them apart from competitors who often outsource to third-party providers for coverage outside of their territories.

The event itself, held at the Omni Tempe Hotel, was a celebration of the past year’s record numbers. The meticulously planned schedule kicked off with an Executive Leadership Meeting, a gathering that set the tone for the conference. Later, Canon sponsored a dinner off-site at a local brewery, providing a casual place for employees from all branches to come together to celebrate.

The following day, attendees were greeted with a breakfast, setting the stage for the ‘Kickoff 2024’ event, which was aptly deemed ‘the big show’ and punctuated by a happy hour sponsored by Sharp Electronics. The evening concluded with a rooftop dinner sponsored by HP, where the celebration continued with the group. Partners like Canon, Lexmark, Clover, Ricoh, Konica Minolta, GreatAmerica and others were also on hand, enjoying the spectacular views from the top of the hotel and celebrating the success of one of their largest customers.

FTG’s past is punctuated by strategic acquisitions, a key driver in its expansion goals. Over the years, the industry has seen a significant consolidation from over 7,000 resellers to less than a thousand. Mega dealers like FTG are rare, with the company’s recent acquisitions of Advanced Business Systems and Copy Link underpinning its growth strategy. Kevin Marshall, the former owner of Copy Link, and Jeff Elkin, alongside his award-winning team, are testaments to FTG’s ability to not only attract top dealers to their family but retain them post-acquisition — a scenario that bucks the trend of sales teams departing after such transitions.

For office equipment resellers contemplating their future in a market where acquisitions can often mean the end of the road, FTG stands as an example of sustainability. The story of Advanced Business Systems, whose team not only stayed post-acquisition but also reportedly earned more than ever before, offers a compelling story for those considering a partnership with FTG.

The event was a solid day of awards and employee recognition, a review of numbers, and, of course, team-building activities. The FTG group at this conference earned their spots and you could see why, especially when reviewing our video montage.

FTG throws a kickoff most competitors can only dream of. Their willingness to publicly share their numbers and provide accessibility to their executive team puts them at a different level and their consistent growth over the last several years has been impressive. The print market is shrinking, yet Flex continues to grow its print operation every year.

SOURCE Industry Analysts Inc.