‘Q2 felt more like Fastenal’ says fastener distributor boss

Net sales have risen for Fastenal, which has now published its latest financials, covering the first half of 2017 and Q2.

Q2 net sales were up 10.6% to $1,121.5m, with profit up 11.3% to $558.5m. First half 2017 net sales reached 2,169.2m, up 8.4% , while profit rose 8.4% to 1,076.5. Higher unit sales drove the positive results, achieved thanks to improving underlying market demand, growth in the industrial vending business and growth in new and existing onsite locations – dedicated sales and service from within or nearby to customers’ facilities.

4,881 industrial vending machines were signed in Q2 2017, up 0.3% on Q2 2016. Fastenal’s installed device count on 30 June 2017 was 66,557 (14.1% more than 30 June 2016).  68 new onsite locations were signed in Q2 and 51 new national account contracts were secured in the quarter.

“The second quarter of 2017 felt more like Fastenal,” said Dan Florness, President and Chief Executive Officer. “We have grown well over the last year, but market headwinds have masked this growth. We continue to ask our customers to challenge Fastenal to be their supply chain partner; their response shines through in the success we are seeing with all of our growth drivers.”

Headcount and branch numbers

Fastenal finished the quarter with fewer staff and branches. Five branches were opened while 31 were closed during Q2. In the last 12 months, Fastenal’s headcount has reduced by 164 people in branches (150 in total) largely through natural attrition, said the firm, rather than an active headcount reduction programme. The group explained that staffing built up in 2015 in anticipation of better growth “that did not happen as quickly as we anticipated”. However, Fastenal headcount is expected to grow in the second half of 2017.

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