Ultimation is expanding its distribution network to include private-label partnerships for its quick-ship material handling product line. The move is part of a long-term strategy to expand in e-commerce, innovate for its mainstay automotive customers and develop new products that provide greater material handling efficiency across multiple industries.
Private labels are gaining a foothold in the wholesale trade, with some experts predicting it will be a major trend in B2B distribution. The practice allows retailers across a range of industries to sell products that have been manufactured by third-party vendors under their own brand names. Private label sales increased by $1.9 billion in 2021, with store brands now accounting for $199 billion worth of sales across all major retail channels.
“Private label partnerships allow retailers to enhance their own brands with quality products from trusted suppliers,” said Richard Canny, president of Ultimation. “They also give suppliers additional penetration into markets they might not otherwise have been able to access.”
Ultimation is no stranger to innovation. In 2016, the company launched a line of “quick ship” products for sale through their own online store as well as on Amazon. E-commerce now makes up nearly 50% of Ultimation’s business. Expansion into additive manufacturing (also known as 3D printing) for some tooling and fixtures gives Ultimation more creative freedom to design parts in-house and allows the company to create prototypes for customers in hours rather than weeks. New product lines such as warehouse robots, Qimarox lifters and Portec conveyors help customers transform their facilities into fully integrated warehouses.
Ultimation was recognized in 2020 and 2022 as one of Inc. 5000’s fastest growing private companies in America. The company was also named a 2022 Michigan 50 Companies to Watch by Michigan Celebrates Small Business.
“We’re always looking to improve as that’s how we continue to grow,” said Canny.