Restoring unused materials
March 10, 2015
A few years ago, Greg Fangel, Egan Company Director of Support Operations, received an out-of-the-blue message on LinkedIn. The message was from Pete O’Keefe, who helps manage Habitat for Humanity’s little-known construction material resale store, ReStore, in the Twin Cities.
The ReStore functions very much like a Goodwill, with new and gently used donations being sold to the public at a fraction of the retail price. Whereas Goodwill stores specialize in clothing and trinket thrifting, ReStores are dedicated to supplying cheap home improvement materials and tools. Companies within the construction industry tend to carry these goods in bulk, so O’Keefe reached out to Egan to inquire about possible donations.
Egan’s first major donation to the ReStore coincided with our acquisition of Weber Electric in 2012. The Weber garage had a collection of wooden ladders that were in good condition. To maintain the highest level of safety, however, Egan opts to use only fiberglass or fiberglass-frame ladders, rendering the Weber ones unusable. The ladder collection was promptly sent to the Twin Cities ReStore location in New Brighton, Minn. All of them sold within a week.
Later on, it became common practice for Egan to donate surplus nuts and bolts left over from jobs. The excess pieces tend to be so numerous that it became more cost-effective to donate them rather than delegate man hours to sorting through all the different sizes and types. When enough pieces accumulate, Egan sends them down to the ReStore by the bucket, where they are subsequently sorted to be sold into plastic bag bundles.
Egan continues to donate to the ReStore today. “Our relationship has grown over the past few years,” said Fangel. “We shed excess and outdated materials, and people in the community receive cheap, contractor-quality tools so they can build new lives. It’s a win-win situation.”
In January, O’Keefe reached out again, but this time to announce that Egan was being recognized as an official corporate sponsor to Habitat for Humanity Twin Cities. The donations are expected to keep flowing as Egan continues to build on promises kept and find more ways to contribute to the community.