Born and raised on the New Hampshire seacoast, Mike Smith came to the Big Apple in 1971 in search of the excitement and opportunities the city offered for an ambitious young salesman. His first job as an apprentice with a manufacturers' rep agency earned him a mere $81 weekly salary. It wasn't much at first, but he knew he was on his way to making his dream a reality.
Mike made due by living in a rooming house and dining at the corner hot dog stand. His goal from the beginning, was to build a successful career as a manufacturers' rep. So he embraced his new territory in the rough neighborhoods of New York, worked 24/7, and established great relationships and accounts selling fasteners.
The eleven years he worked for McCormick Associates gave him the field experience and education he needed to open up his own company. So, in March of 1982 with the help of friends and family, Mike started Smith Associates in a small apartment located in northern New Jersey.
He learned early on in his life, that a good businessman needs to be honorable and ethical. This methodology worked in the long run, but slowed the growth process in the beginning. Mike vowed he'd never take a line away from another rep, so he declined the many calls from manufacturers offering to switch their lines and sign with him.
So he waited, patiently and proudly... and then it took off. Wrought Washer Manufacturing of Milwaukee, Wisconsin was one of the first lines Mike represented, followed by Dayon Spring Manufacturing of Farmington, Connecticut.
The business grew, and the apartment with dad's rolltop desk was no longer adequate enough to house the demands of a growing company. He soon thereafter opened a new office with a staff in Hackensack, New Jersey.
As Smith Associates grew and selling trends changed, Mike made a difficult and eventually fortuitous decision to focus on the distribution market. Armed with stubborn Irish integrity, he vowed not to betray his customers and chose not to concentrate on OEMs. This gained the unflappable trust of his customers: the distributors. Add to that the patriotic alliance with domestic manufacturers, and Mike became carefully aligned with the top producers of each product line: APM Hexseal, Ideal Fasteners, Vulcan Steel Products, and WJ Roberts to name a few.
As any successful salesman knows, the marketing decisions and sales policies created early on become the foundation for a company's growth and survival. The next 15 years of growth increased Smith Associates' lines and geographical regions. Five major industries including structural, electrical, military, aerospace and industrial are offered in both the New York Metropolitan and Mid-Atlantic regions.
Mike's formula for success has not only put kudos on his wall and dollars in his pocket, but it has increased the bottom line for many manufacturers, as well. Inviting the challenge of handling a brand new line, Mike has contributed to the development of business for many companies. Principals like Trihex , Prestige Stamping, TurnaSure, and Screws Industries praise this outstanding rep company for driving their sales into new territories and uncharted industries.
With distribution company sales increasing by the millions, the demand for representation had necessitated the opening of an additional office in New England. Dan Bielefield, former National Sales Manager for Crescent Manufacturing, brought to Smith Associates his sales expertise as well as experience from running headers, threaders and slotters to accomplish the task.
"Communication does not mean computerization." The professionals at Smith Associates believe in the old fashioned ingredient of personal contact, supported by the facilitation of automation. Think it's not possible? Ask the "millenial" on our team. Corey Magyar, a bright and talented young man with years of sales knowledge, a business education, and the drive to succeed in a rapidly evolving world, is looking forward to building his career and reputation, excited to offer his assistance at every opportunity.
All of us at Smith Associates thank our loyal principals and customers for all your faith and support over the years.
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We at Smith Associates know that finding the right manufacturer for your product requirements is a choice not to be taken lightly. That’s why we will work with you and walk you through your needs, the scope of your goals, and your budget.
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46 Years in the Fastener Industry
Knowledgeable, honest, and hard-working, Mike Smith has grown Smith Associates into a reputable agency through determination and ethical practices. He has seen the industry evolve over the years and has always been able to stay ahead of the changes, evolving the agency to meet the ever-shifting needs of his customers and principals. Mike has made a well-deserved name for himself that is synonymous with ‘success’, and continues to find new ways to lead his team into the future.
The Backbone of the Agency
As the industry and, thus, the agency has been subjected to the rapidly transforming world, Chris has kept up with the latest information and uses it to help drive Smith Associates to the top. Armed with years of experience from various industries and positions within them, Chris has been able to maintain the focus of the agency on all fronts by aiming high, low, forward, and backward. There wouldn’t be Smith Associates as it is today without Chris, and we are proud and lucky to have her on our team.
Dan got his start working on the floor of a cold-heading manufacturer, giving him hands-on experience in a realm most of us don’t see or know anything about. Soon thereafter, Dan was selling the screws he was so familiar manufacturing to customers in both the commercial and military industries, providing him insight on products that make most people’s heads spin. Now as a major driving force in Smith Associates, Dan uses his expertise to develop long lasting and trusting relationships with some of the most well-known distributors on the east coast, providing the know-how on all facets of the business.
Tech Savvy Young Blood
Fully embracing the new era of doing business in a digital world, Corey has helped bring Smith Associates up to speed with a fresh outlook and new insights. Experienced in entrepreneurship with a multitude of other talents from many industries, Corey is able to bring together aspects from each to help mold Smith Associates into the agency of the future.