published Tuesday, November 8th, 2011

Kenny Pipe & Supply says settling into new Chattanooga site most fitting

Chris Finley is the branch manager of Kenny Pipe and Supply.
Chris Finley is the branch manager of Kenny Pipe and Supply.
Photo by Dan Henry.
1271 N. Holtzclaw Ave.
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• Name: Kenny Pipe & Supply

• Location: 1271 N. Holtzclaw Ave.

• Contact information: Branch manager Chris Finley, 423-499-4489, cfinley@kennypipe.com

• Products/services: Plumbing wholesale, including pipe valves, fittings, toilets, sinks and faucets for homes, offices and factories

• Age: Kenny was established in Nashville in 1992. The Chattanooga branch opened in June and is moving to a permanent location this month.

• Target market: Local plumbers and contractors, but individuals are welcome

• Biggest hurdle: Starting a permanent location in Chattanooga. Contractors and plumbers are hesitant to keep a large supply of parts because of the uncertainty of work and overhead cost associated with keeping stock. That means Kenny Pipe & Supply needs to maintain a stockyard, a process that often takes awhile to finish.

• Biggest reward: Expanding in new markets and working with new people are the biggest rewards for Patrick Kenny, the son of company founder Bill Kenny, who is responsible for helping start new locations. "It's a new town we've wanted to be in," he said. "We wanted to be with the right people and do business like we wanted to do business. We're seeing everything fall into place."

• Lesson learned: Learn from your mistakes and keep pushing forward. Kenny said every branch he helps start is akin to starting a new business. "Half the days we have here you feel like you're running around with your head cut off and you're just trying to keep as many plates spinning as you can," he said. "You come across different challenges each day."

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