manufacturing

Quick Fitting sees rapid growth, Made in USA product

QUICK Fitting Inc. said Monday it is expanding its manufacturing operations and relocating its headquarters ahead of expected rapid growth.
Posted 3/6/12

WARWICK – Quick Fitting Inc. said Monday it is relocating its headquarters ahead of expected rapid growth.

The manufacturer of fittings for plumbing, heating and irrigation applications said it is relocating its headquarters to a 100,000-square-foot facility in Warwick from East Providence.

Eventually, Quick Fitting plans to move one of its five manufacturing facilities, currently located in China, back to that facility.

Fueling its growth is an “overall conversion of the market” from conventional methods, such as solder, to push-connect technology, which allows “really anyone” to do it, said President and CEO David Crompton.

“It takes about 17 pounds to insert [the copper tube] and about 700 pounds to try and pull it off. It’s just so simple, so easy to use … it lasts longer. It’s like the hammer and the nail gun, it makes life so much easier, so much faster,” Crompton said.

“If you had a leak under your sink today … you could patch it in yourself [and] when you push it on, it gives you the same connection whether you’re a 25-year plumber or [someone] who has done it for the first time. It’s an amazing technology.”

“We’re on track to supply [our products] to many, many wholesalers,” Crompton added, noting that they’re slated to launch to an undisclosed big-box retailer soon. The company’s clients include: Orgill, Handy Hardware, Tractor Supply (more than 1,100 locations), and HD Supply, among others.

Quick Fitting currently supplies to more than 7,000 retail locations and plans to grow to more than 10,000 in the near future.

To keep up with that growth, the company sees adding between 150 and 300 people to its current 37-person staff.

“Every time we turn around, we do hiring - which is pretty much every week now,” Crompton said.

“We’re been on a terrific growth track for the past couple years, and this past year has been absolutely phenomenal. We launched new lines, we’ve got some recent patents that we’ve secured on our copper products … we’re just really blowing out.”

The company considered relocating its headquarters to Massachusetts, Crompton said, and even talked to economic development officials. They found “a lot of opportunity there,” but chose to stay in Rhode Island because they didn’t want to uproot their workers “[who] have helped us get where we are today. That was probably the deciding factor to stay in the state.”

Quick Fitting is looking to bring back a manufacturing facility to the United States in order to have its Copperhead product be “Made in the USA.”

Nevertheless, the company would have to make “significant investments” in automating its product line. That way, it plans to have about 10 times the amount of production it could produce overseas with about one-third of the manpower. There are currently 600 employees in China and in Warwick, they’re looking at about 200 employees.

The new, leased building is located at 30 Plan Way, Warwick.

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