WESCO is more than electrical, Engel tells large investors

Speaking earlier this month at the Raymond James Annual Institutional Investors Conference, John Engel president, chairman and CEO of WESCO revealed the direction the company has chosen.

“We’re focused on…providing complete solutions for [three] demand streams…MRO indirect suppliers and services—not just electrical, but industrial. OEM direct materials and value-added assemblies. And capital projects…” Engel said.

Above: Part of one slide in WESCO’s presentation at the annual conference for institutional investors.

In the transcript from the conference Engel also mentioned:

Suppliers want fewer distributors

“We’re also hearing that [from] our suppliers, those that we’ve partnered with, they are concerned about channel partner or distribution channel integrity…and they’d like to do business with a smaller number of larger players…I don’t see these trends subsiding.”

Hidden fact

“…even those that know us well would not know this fact: One-third of our products and service portfolio is in general suppliers, of which only a portion are electrical.”


“We’re looking at expanding our product and service portfolio through acquisitions, and not just rolling up electrical distribution houses. We think our business models extend horizontally to other product categories. To some degree our business models are somewhat product-agnostic.”

Datacom growth

In answer to a question about Anixter, Engel noted that only $100 million of the company’s $5.3 billion in 2006 revenue was in datacom. Now, after acquisitions, the company had $1 billion in 2011 datacom sales, out of $6.1 billion. 

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