Five-fold sales growth drives Randa expansion
Unprecedented growth for Randa Accessories — revenue has risen 550 percent since 2000 to nearly $650 million — prompted the New York-based company to expand its northern Nevada distribution capabilities.
Randa, which expanded its Western-region presence several years ago with a 234,000-square-foot distribution facility at Tahoe Reno Industrial Center, said a few days ago that it will expand into an additional 275,000-square-foot warehouse and add up to 120 new jobs in the area. The company expects to spend upwards of $25 million to develop the new site.
David Katz, Randa’s senior vice president and chief marketing officer, says the original facility primarily shipped luggage, and the new facility will handle neckwear, gifts, jewelry, belts and footwear, which requires a much larger materials-handling and processing workforce. Randa currently employs between 35 and 40 at TRIC.
Randa, the world’s largest supplier of men’s accessories, supplies goods to Macy’s, Kohls, Nordstrom, Walmart and many other large retailers. The company originally chose the Reno area due to its strong workforce, weather, transportation capabilities and proximity to customers’ distribution facilities, Katz says. Those same factors led to the company’s decision to double its logistics space in the region.
“Over the last few months as we did further logistics analysis, we knew we had to grow our infrastructure,” he says. “Our company is growing exponentially. We needed more space, more facilities and more equipment, and Reno is a logical place for us to grow in.
“Reno is well located to bring goods into the port of Los Angeles and to distribute goods to customers’ distribution centers. We also own a factory in Guatemala, and getting goods from Guatemala to Reno is pretty convenient.”
In addition to the manufacturing facility in Guatemala, Randa operates logistics centers in New Orleans, Ontario, Canada, Mexico and Taunton, Mass. Randa acquired the Massachusetts facility through its purchase of Swank Inc. in 2012. It also leases about 40,000-square feet at Tahoe Reno Industrial Center.
Katz says the company expects to begin hiring for shipping, materials handling and supervisory positions in the fall.
Randy Kennedy, Randa’s senior vice president of operations, will oversee installation of a state-of-the-art racking and conveyor systems at the new site that can handle large amounts of small, delicate items such as neckties and other accessories. The company expects to ship as many as 40 million units per year between its two Nevada facilities.
“Reno will be a great model for high efficiency of processing large volumes of accessories,” Katz says.
Randa also is growing its e-commerce presence, Katz says, and the new Reno logistics center will fulfill direct-to-consumer orders.
A press release from the Economic Development Authority of Western Nevada says Randa will move into an industrial building currently under construction by developer Marc Siegal of SJS Realty Services of Deefield, Ill. To adhere to company standards, the new facility must have silver certification from the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design program, Katz notes.
“We love being in Reno,” Katz says. “Our first location did very well, and we find it to be a terrific environment to have a business in. Our company has gone from $100 million in revenue in 2000 to almost $650 million last year, and we are ahead of that this year. When you look at that kind of growth, the ability to continue to expand and draw from the local labor pool is critical.”
Organizations that assisted Randa with site selection and other services include EDAWN, NV Energy, CBRE, Tectonics Design Group, Panattoni Construction, JP Engineering and Etchemendy Engineering.
Despite ongoing difficulties, Northern Nevada’s office real estate market will endure, experts predict
IGT’s decision to list its 1.2 million sq. ft. campus for lease this month and the recent $3.8 million sale of Harley Davidson’s 3-story financial services building in Carson City are the latest examples of companies no longer needing larger-scale office properties to maintain productivity levels and meet customer needs.