Reclamation, LLC | Hickory, NC
Pete Zagaroli, Ryan Lovern, Rick Barry and Clay Neill
A start-up furniture business in Hickory, North Carolina, Reclamation, LLC manufactures tables from reclaimed wood. The business started in February 2011 with self-funding from its four principal owners: Pete Zagaroli, Ryan Lovern, Rick Barry and Clay Neill.
Reclamation began producing furniture from wood that was reclaimed from old buildings. They saw a niche where they could find their own raw material by harvesting reclaimed wood from several old factories and mills in the area, and set up a production facility to convert the material into marketable pieces of furniture.
“We’re a full repurposing company,” says Pete. “When we go onto a site, most facilities have old and contemporary portions. We tear down the old and redevelop. We want to reuse, recycle and repurpose everything involved in the project.”
Reclamation first got in touch with the SBTDC in May 2011, seeking advice on setting goals as well as help with financial projections. “I’m on the board for the City of Hickory Small Business Council, and the SBTDC’s Bill Parrish spoke at a meeting,” says Ryan. “At the time, we had a consultant that we were paying all this money. It was difficult to see thousands of dollars going out the door. Bill got us in touch with SBTDC business counselor Byron Hicks, and we put him on speed dial.”
Byron assisted Reclamation with long-range planning – where they are, where they have to go, and looking beyond getting the next 120 tables made. Helping Reclamation set and meet goals has been monumental in the business’s success. “We can’t believe more people don’t utilize the SBTDC. The things they advise us on have been extremely helpful. When you look at our bottom line, it makes a difference whether we would have made it or not,” says Pete.
Meeting their goals allowed Reclamation to replace their contract labor with full-time employees. They have also relocated to a larger facility, which will allow them to grow and eventually double production. “It is exciting to see a new manufacturing business open in this area, since many have closed during the recession,” says Byron. Reclamation now sells to several leaders in the industry, including Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams, an internationally acclaimed home furnishings company.
The SBTDC also engaged an ASU graduate student to use Reclamation for a research paper on supply chain management. The paper outlined the current supply chain and suggested efficiency improvements.
With the help of the SBTDC, Reclamation has grown from a furniture builder into a sustainable furniture manufacturer. They believe that the need for American-made products is continuing to grow, and that “Made in America” is starting to mean something again.
Story originally featured in the SBTDC's 2013-2014 Annual Report.
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