100 Years Of Looking Ahead: D&H's Culture of Success


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1918: D&H is founded as Economy Tire & Rubber in Williamsport, Pa., a tire retreading company that guaranteed retreads even though original tire manufacturers did not.

1929: Economy Tire & Rubber changes its name to D&H Distributing as it adds Philco radios to its line card and moves into the consumer electronics industry. D&H founder David Schwab, a big believer in new technology, leads the charge into radio and TV distribution.

1938: D&H signs a distribution agreement with Radio Corporation of America, which would become RCA, a major manufacturer in the golden age of radio and television. The deal proved to be a game-changer, driving big sales growth as D&H powered RCA into the No. 1 market position in its territory.

1943: D&H sells its auto parts business to finance a more formidable focus on consumer electronics and technology, and opens its Baltimore office.

1952: D&H opens its new headquarters in Harrisburg, Pa., the building it still calls home today.

1957: David Schwab’s son Izzy -- who began working part-time sweeping floors at D&H while in high school -- starts a full-time position on the sales desk at D&H.

1968: D&H celebrates its 50th anniversary as a $45 million company -- one of the biggest RCA distributors in the U.S.

1973: D&H becomes a distributor for Atari, one of the first video gaming systems. Within two years, D&H is distributing 15 lines of gaming software.

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1980s: D&H is authorized as a distributor by Texas Instruments, Commodore Computers and Panasonic Printers.

1988: D&H expands its home entertainment business and migrates from its regional model to a new national model, adding warehouses in Illinois, Massachusetts and Texas.

1989: Izzy’s son Michael -- a graduate of the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and Villanova University law school -- starts at D&H as an outside sales rep.

1992: D&H expands the computer products division with eight distribution hubs throughout the country.

1995: D&H signs its first agreement with Microsoft just months before the launch of Windows 95 -- which with its graphical user interface (GUI) forever changes the technology landscape. D&H has remained one of Microsoft’s top distribution partners, providing education and training for Microsoft operating systems, office productivity suites and other products, now including Office 365, Microsoft Azure and Microsoft Surface.

1995: Izzy’s son Dan, a graduate of the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, joins D&H and creates the company’s education division.

1997: D&H’s K-12 division becomes the largest supplier of calculators to educational institutions.

1998: D&H inks a blockbuster deal with Intel, distributing the processor maker’s Celeron processor. D&H will go on to distribute major Intel processors including Pentium, Xeon and breakthrough products like NUC (Next Unit of Computing) and Optane. D&H will also be honored over the years with multiple Intel awards including highest data center growth performance and top server revenue distributor.

1998: D&H becomes an employee-owned stock ownership company -- one of less than 1 percent of employee-owned businesses in the U.S. The Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP) model has provided big competitive advantages in shaping the D&H customer service culture.

1999: Izzy Schwab, the driving force behind D&H’s successful move into IT product distribution, is named CEO.

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2002: D&H CEO Izzy Schwab is named to the IT Industry Hall of Fame. D&H is rated as the highest-performing distributor in the CRN Preferred Sourcing Study.

2003: D&H becomes a distributor for Silicon Valley pioneer Hewlett-Packard and is now a top distributor for HP Inc. and HPE. D&H is leading the charge on breakthrough products for both companies, including the HP Sprout immersive computing platform, HPE Gen10 servers and HPE Aruba wireless gear.

2004: D&H hits $1 billion in sales and expands its warehousing capacity to 1.5 million square feet.

2005: D&H signs with Cisco, becoming the first distributor added to the networking power’s lineup in more than a decade. The Cisco partnership will blossom to include Cisco UCS, Telepresence and the popular Cisco Meraki platform. D&H will go on to win Cisco’s Worldwide Small Business Distributor of the Year award.

2006: D&H is authorized to carry Lenovo and is named a winner in the CRN Sourcing Study in the broadline distribution category.

2007: D&H expands into Canada with an initial warehouse in Mississauga, Ontario. The Canadian business will end up providing $400 million in organic sales growth.

2008: Dan and Michael Schwab are named co-presidents, and the D&H Cares charity foundation is established by D&H employee co-owners.

2009: D&H appears on the Forbes list of America’s Largest Private Companies for the first time and opens its largest distribution center yet in Atlanta.

2017: D&H opens its second Canadian location with a new warehouse in Vancouver, British Columbia. Izzy Schwab celebrates his 60th anniversary with the company.

2018: D&H turns 100. Dan and Michael Schwab celebrate their 10th anniversary as copresidents, teaming with co-workers to grow the business from a $1.45 billion company with 850 employees into a $4 billion company with 1,250 employees. Over the same period, the ESOP, which is celebrating its 20th anniversary, grows by 300 percent.

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