AMMEX: After 35 Years, the Keys to Our Success

Ammex's 35th anniversary celebration logo.

Where were you in 1988?

Maybe already running your distribution business. Or still in school, studying hard to build a better tomorrow for yourself. Or maybe not even born yet.

Fortunately for a whole lot of people, a guy named Fred Crosetto was starting a distribution business for personal protective equipment.

Now looking back after 35 years of serving customers and distributing the tools of health, hygiene, and safety, it’s helpful to examine the keys to his company’s success.

He started AMMEX with a rented office and a borrowed van. During its first month, he sold 50 cases of gloves, which he eventually—with years of hard work and smarts—parlayed into a multinational corporation with offices in North America and Southeast Asia, and distribution centers in the U.S. and Canada.

Doing it right from the start

“There are a few key areas that have helped AMMEX not only survive but thrive,” Crosetto says. “First, we picked the right market; demand has been expanding and will continue to expand. It may not have been evident in the 1990s, but it is today: Gloves are essential equipment in multiple industries.

“Two, we were flexible on execution. We didn’t build our own buildings and warehouses, but we leveraged our company to expand around the globe.

“Three, we consistently focused on serving our customers. We understand that we’re not perfect, but the fact that our customers are not always satisfied is what keeps us striving harder.”

The Southeast Asia connection

It’s not just Crosetto’s opinion; team members who have been with AMMEX for a long time agree with those assessments.

If you ask Aryn Newburn, AMMEX’s Marketing Product Manager who has been with the company since 2001, what are the biggest changes she’s seen, she points to overseas expansion.

“The Philippines office brought a whole new aspect to the business,” she says. “It was not a typical call center, which was really different in that they were selling (product)—as opposed to the other call centers that were popping up at the same time.”

It all starts at the top

Of course, no business is successful without excellent leadership. The company’s exponential growth is due to its top leaders, including Crosetto and CEO Keyo Gold, making the right decisions at the right times.

Says Wendy Grantham, VP of Sales Operations, who first arrived at the company in 1998: “Fred and Keyo always like to deflect and share the success—‘Oh, it’s not me’—but there is a big element of their business decisions that built this business, and I don’t think they give themselves enough credit for that.”

AMMEX was in the right place at the right time, and is positioned for growth moving forward: because of the opportunities in the market, because of its diverse and capable team, and because of strong and committed leadership, all focused on and driving the growth and success of our customers. That’s been our secret to accomplishing so much over 35 years, and will be in the future.

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