In the world of snowmobiling gear and accessories, 509 has carved a niche for itself as an industry leader. This journey to success has been marked by innovation, dedication, and an unyielding commitment to quality. An integral part of this journey was the company's expansion and move into a new warehouse in Cheney, Washington. Tom Delanoy, a key figure in 509's growth, shared some fascinating insights into this remarkable transition.
The Humble Beginnings
509's growth story began with a small 1,500-square-foot warehouse. However, this space proved to be too limiting for their ambitious plans, and within a year, they had outgrown it. The next step was a 5,000-square-foot warehouse, but once again, their rapid expansion required them to seek larger accommodations.
In 2011, the company then moved into a 10,000-square-foot warehouse at the far end of the Aero building. This location provided some breathing room, but 509's growth showed no signs of slowing down. They soon added another 7,000-square-foot bay in the same area to accommodate their ever-expanding inventory and operations. This move was just a stepping stone to what would become their biggest warehouse yet.
Eventually, 509 settled into the south end of the Aero building, where they reached the pinnacle of their warehouse space, boasting an impressive 40,000 square feet for their office and storage needs. This larger space allowed the company to streamline its operations and efficiently meet the demands of its growing customer base.
Memorable Moments in 509's Warehouses
Moving into a new warehouse was not without its challenges. Tom Delanoy recalls the physical exertion of moving inventory and the daunting task of updating business materials with the new address. The transition was both physically and administratively demanding, requiring the entire team to work diligently to ensure a smooth relocation.
509's warehouses were not just spaces for storage; they were the backdrop for some unforgettable moments. In the first warehouse, a single container of helmets filled every nook and cranny, leaving no space to walk. One night in the early days at the Aero warehouse, a police visit added a touch of excitement to the mix, thanks to a mannequin dressed as a yeti near a back window. The unexpected alarm had officers nearly ready to take action.
However, it wasn't all work and no play at 509's warehouses. Staff members enjoyed friendly competitions, racing crazy carts through the aisles, engaging in lunchtime basketball games, and even participating in a staff beer mile race. The team's creative side shone through as they built a halfpipe behind a semi-truck and raced remote-controlled boats in the flooded parking lot, showcasing the spirit of adventure and fun that drives 509's success.These moments of camaraderie and fun served as a testament to the tight-knit and vibrant culture that has helped 509 thrive.
509 bid farewell to its Aero warehouse location, where it had witnessed years of growth and innovation, and embarked on a new journey in 2020. This move marked a strategic shift to a new facility in Spokane Valley, reflecting the company's ever-expanding reach and the need for a larger, more versatile space to accommodate their thriving business. The relocation to Spokane Valley signifies 509's commitment to staying ahead in the industry, offering customers even more exceptional products and services, and continuing to be a trailblazer in the world of snowmobiling and outdoor gear.