Published January 20, 1998
Volume 6, Number 1

Bradshaw Joins Sales Mark in Merger
Longtime Hacienda Tenant Now Part of Nationwide Firm

Cheryl Munce, Sales Mark marketing manager, with some of the foods
the company represents for its manufacturer clients.

By Jay Hipps
Network Editor

Bradshaw Incorporated, a major Western U.S. food broker and a Hacienda tenant since 1986, has merged its operations with Sales Mark, a broker prominent from the Midwest through the Mideast. With a combined 7,000 employees and nearly 40 branch offices, Sales Mark is now one of the largest food brokers in the country.

"We can now handle the manufacturers that want national coverage," says Cheryl Munce, Sales Mark marketing manager. "We're getting to carry some items as part of Sales Mark that we didn't represent before."

Stocking the Shelves
Sales Mark, as a food broker, serves as the marketing arm of major food manufacturers like Heinz, Minute Maid, Pillsbury, and Lea & Perrins, as well as manufacturers of household grocery items and health and beauty care products. 

"We work for the manufacturer and we're paid on a commission basis," explains Munce. "We don't ever take possession of the products."

Sales Mark has a number of sales representatives who call on regional accounts such as Lucky or Safeway as well as independent accounts, which include both smaller grocery chains and "mom and pop" stores. 

These representatives fill orders for the manufacturers' products. There is much more to their role than that, however. For instance, Sales Mark oversees all advertising of a product, including grocery store coupon books, newspaper and direct mail advertising, and in-store displays. 

"It's also our responsibility to see that when an ad hits, all the stores have enough product to cover the ad," she says. "It's up to our retail sales force to make sure that the stores aren't running low on the product and that the product is on the shelf."

A Merger of Equals
Bradshaw, Inc. was founded in 1972 and grew to service seven states—California, Washington, Oregon, Arizona, Utah, Nevada, and Idaho—before the merger, which took effect at the end of last year. 

"It was pretty much a merger of equals," says Munce. "We had very similar cultures and philosophies. Our management has remained the same—we just have a parent company with more resources."


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