By Joe Nolan
B/A Products is the kind of company you used to hear about a lot – a busy little family affair that blossomed into a booming success. During a time when many entrepreneurs are questioning the American Dream, B/A is finding that the best way to build a future is through old-fashioned values like inventiveness, perseverance and the help of a hard working family.
When Mel and Enid Berman founded B/A Products Co. in Hollywood, Florida they built chain assemblies, punched rubber sling straps and offered other basic products aimed at the towing industry.
“It started with a hardworking man looking to provide a better life for his family,” says Chip Kauffman – Mel and Enid’s son-in-law and one of the driving forces behind the company’s impressive, recent growth. “They were just looking to supplement their income. Mel’s job at the time was selling new and rebuilt starters and alternators to service stations as an independent rep of a company who would rebuild the defective units.” It was Mel’s eye for opportunity that first got his company off the ground.
“Most of these service stations had their own tow truck to tow cars in need of repair to their garage. There were very few towing companies as we know them today. The tow trucks at that time were nearly all of an identical style that used what was called a tow sling to lift the front end of the car off the ground for towing,” says Kauffman. “These tow slings had two 10” wide by 47” long rubber straps that needed replacement periodically. Mel and Enid started what would become B/A Products Co. by buying bulk sheets of this rubber and cutting it to the correct size by hand with a knife. They drilled the holes on each end by hand and attached them to the tow slings in their garage at night while Mel continued at his day job. We still sell them today as our part number 1-1.”…To read the entire article, visit the November-December 2013 Wire Rope Exchange.
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