Green Sales Company

Green History

Green Sales Company was founded in 1957 by John Greenleaf, a former Parts Manager of Fuller Ford in Cincinnati, Ohio.  John left Fuller Ford, the largest Ford dealer in Cincinnati at the time, to join Fairmont Products as a product representative. Fairmont Products, as we understand, supplied a line of aftermarket, look alike ford parts. His motto was "Sell or Swap, Buy or Barter".  At this time, Ford had no return plan on their parts, so John would offer dealers a trade-in deal based on their purchase from his line.  Over the next year or so, the pile of old parts grew beyond his expectations.  The garage and basement were both full, so he started storing parts in two chicken houses in Hamilton, Ohio.  In the late 1950's, Ford introduced their inventory protection plan which created two types of parts, returnable and non-returnable.  John continued to offer his deal on non-returnable parts, "the orphans", to give them a good home.  Around 1967 Ford started selling Autolite which later changed to Motorcraft.  John now took his plan and switched to the new line offered by Ford Motor Co.  Over the years the pile grew too big for the chicken houses.  In 1970 John decided to open a store front. The first location was on Blade Street in Elmwood, a small neighborhood in Cincinnati, Ohio.  John later incorporated the business by purchasing Aztec Inc., a defunct public relations company, renaming it to what is now known as Aztec Automotive Inc., dba Green Sales Company.  In 1973 a stray bottle rocket entered a second floor window which started a big fire.  The second floor was burnt out and the first floor experience heavy water damage.  As a result, John moved the pile again.

A new site at 427 Seymour Ave. was leased just a few miles north in the Carthage area. The street address at the time was not actually 427 but John thought it would be a nice tie in with the popular Ford engine. This location was more of a warehouse than a store front. It's a good thing too because the pile just kept getting bigger. Before long the 10,000 sf. building was packed wall to wall and floor to ceiling. During this time organization was a problem. The company was understaffed and the parts kept coming.  In 1980, Tim Yeomans, a  Parts & Service representative for Ford Motor Company for previous 13 years, joined the business. Tim had sold Ford parts, service, Carlite glass, and automated inventory systems to dealers and independent parts warehouses for Ford over a six state region.  Over the next few years the focus was acquisition, organization, and expansion.  

Acquisition: During this time the economy was taking its toll and the number of dealer terminations rose considerably. Bad for the dealers but good for Green Sales Company. Inventory buyouts were very plentiful and affordable. As you can imagine, the pile kept getting bigger. John always said, "You can't sell out of an empty truck."  This "truck" was soon busting at the seams.   

Organization: With the inventory growing so fast, it was important to organize the mess so everyone knew just what was out there. Slowly the piles disappeared and more inventory racks took their place. With more identified stock on hand, more staff was needed to cover the increasing phone calls.

Expansion: The expansion took place in both physical size and scope of sales area. Through the 1980's Green Sales grew from 10,000 sf. to 37,500 sf.  As Green Sales grew so did the focus of sales. The Ohio valley region could no longer support the physical growth.  We began to develop a reputation for having the hard to find parts.  Calls from all over the country were increasing and this seemed to be the new market focus. In 1985 new watts lines were put in and this really made it easy for dealers to check their part numbers. With the help of some direct advertising and strong personnel Green Sales became a common place for dealer's and hobbyist to locate obsolete Ford parts.

John Greenleaf retired in 1986 and Tim Purchased the remaining portion of the business.  In the early 1990's it became more of a family business as Tim's two sons joined the company.  For the most part, business continued as usual and each year Green Sales grew a little more.  With an ever increasing need for space, both storage and office, a search for a new location began. Several locations were considered but none of them really fit the bill. Tim had always admired a particular location and coincidentally it was for sale. The 120,000 sf. building was oversized for the current needs but lack of expansion space had always been a problem. Some retrofitting would also need to take place to make it feel more like home. The price had kept it out of early consideration but after some number crunching the deal had possibilities. In November 1993 the Yeomans family closed the transaction on the new location at 2172 Seymour Avenue. 

At the time, the search seemed like a monumental task. The search and transaction turned out to be nothing compared to the move. With plans for the new layout in place, the staff was divided into two groups. The first group would try to continue normal business practice and did so pretty well considering the strain placed on the company. The second group was charged with the task of preparing the new location and relocating the massive inventory.  Moving the inventory was a job in itself but the main problem was to know where everything was at all times so that it could be found immediately upon sale. Time, while a concern, never seemed to be the real issue. This move was for the long term and the real concern was to set up the new location properly, while maintaining the integrity of the existing inventory. As if the move wasn't enough, it seemed like the most logical time to do the first and only check of the inventory. Most dealerships will do an inventory once a year but size and minimal staffing had never permitted for quite an undertaking. To its detriment or possibly its benefit, Green Sales has always done things a little differently than most auto parts businesses.  In October 1994 Green Sales Company moved into its newly remodeled office and warehouse. Ultimately, the task took eleven months, over 100 semi-trailer loads of parts, and a lot of hard work by the staff. Under the conditions the crew performed exemplarily.

A new era for Green Sales Company was under way.  The company has experience quite a few changes over the past few years.  The greatest probably being the switch over from its manual inventory system to a computerized system.  Probably the most amazing thing about the inventory prior to 1995 was not so much the size, but the fact that it was maintained on an inventory card filing system of approximately 150,000 cards.  We had looked at computers in the past but they never seemed fast enough or affordable enough to implement into the business.  The modern computer boom had finally made it feasible.  The inventory currently consists of over 220,000 Ford current and obsolete part numbers representing over 1,983,000 parts.  Parts are stocked 12' to 14' high and  cover over 75,000 sf., a little more than a professional football field.

As in any other business things are always changing and we will do our best to build the business year after year.  The years have been good to the people of Green Sales Company.  We sincerely thank our customers, suppliers, and staff for their invaluable role in our success.  For those new to Green Sales Company, we hope to earn your business and loyalty.  

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