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S&P 500 Component
HeadquartersWinona, Minnesota, U.S.
Number of locations2,566 (September 2011)[1]
Key peopleWillard D. Oberton (President and CEO)
Daniel L. Florness (Executive Vice President and CFO)
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S&P 500 Component
HeadquartersWinona, Minnesota, U.S.
Number of locations2,566 (September 2011)[1]
Key peopleWillard D. Oberton (President and CEO)
Daniel L. Florness (Executive Vice President and CFO)

Fastenal Co[2] is an American company based in Winona, Minnesota.[3] Fastenal distributes industrial, safety and construction supplies[4] and offers services including, third party logistics, inventory management, manufacturing, and tool repair.[5] Fastenal refers to itself as an industrial supply company,[5] but Reuters calls it an industrial distributor.[3][6]

In North America, the company boasts nationwide networks of small retail stores that sell to consumers as well as companies, and its overseas operations include sales as well as sourcing.


Founded in 1967[5] by Bob Kierlin,[7] who later became a Minnesota State Senator,[8] it was incorporated December 24, 1968.[4]

Fastenal's offerings are purchased, not made. But as of 2009, the company has at least one cold heading manufacturing line.[9]

By 2004, 50% of product[10] was processed steel.

Retail outlets[edit]

The company places much emphasis on its series of over 2,600 retail stores in North America.

Client companies and selling stratagems[edit]

Companies that purchase from Fastenal are either large[11] or small,[9] but most overseas customers may be comparatively mid-sized.[9]

The company sells both retail and wholesale.[4]

Manufacturers[3][12] and government agencies[11] buy from Fastenal.

US Government contracts[edit]

Fastenal has been contracted by the US Government on a number of occasions.[10][13]

Commodity cycle costs[edit]

In 2004, increasing material costs were passed on to end users by the company.[10]

In 2007, Fastenal claimed that at least 20% sales and profit growth and ROI were achievable during a normal economic cycle.[14]

Customers sometimes ask for lower prices due to externalities.[9]

Holo-Krome asset acquisition[edit]

In 2009, Fastenal acquired parts of Holo-Krome, a US socket head screw-making company.[9][15]

S&P 500 constituent[edit]

Fastenal and were added to the S&P 500 index in late 2008, replacing removed corporations.[16]

Products and services[edit]

Fastenal's main inventory is fasteners such as screws, threaded rods, and nuts, which can be used in construction and manufacturing.[4] Other product lines do exist. The company had a total of 690,000 individual products as of 2010.[3]


The company offers a variety of services, including inventory management, small fastener manufacture, vending, and machining.[5]

Vending machines[edit]

Part of its services line,[citation needed] Fastenal offers vending machines[5] full of needed supplies, such as MRO wares,[9] drill bits, and tool bits, for placement inside smaller[17] client company locations. Fastenal founder Bob Kierlin originated[17] this plan. While others may offer similar services,[17] Fastenal's vending machines are a disruptive technology, nonetheless.

International operations[edit]

While the company is primarily focused on North America,[citation needed] Fastenal also does business in Singapore, China, and the Netherlands. Overseas sales operations seek larger client companies than do the small, local North American shops.[9]


Entering the market in 1994,[17] as of 2009 Fastenal had retail sales outlets in every province and two Canadian distribution centers.[15]


As of 2009, Fastenal had established retail outlets in 14 of Mexico's states as well as a distribution center.[15] It started its Mexico activities in 2001.[17]


Fastenal's Asian trading company,[10] Fastenal Asian Sourcing and Trading Co, is a wholly owned subsidiary located in Shanghai, China,[18] where it directs sourcing[10] and import purchasing[19] activities. By 2007, its employees were physically auditing factories it purchased from for quality and "social compliance" (which means a strong commitment to capitalism[citation needed]).[14] Established in 2003,[20] as of 2007, its activities included quality control.[14] By 2008, it was also conducting sales operations.[17]


Opening in 2001, Fastenal's Singapore location was its first site outside North America.[17] By 2009,[9] sales operations in this small city state[17] were complemented by those in its larger neighbor Malaysia.[9]


Locally incorporated Fastenal Malaysia Sdn Bhd is associated with Fastenal's Malaysian activities. The company runs an A2LA accredited testing laboratory in this nation as of 2014,[21][22] and, as of 2013, has at least five locations in Malaysia.[23]

The company may operate a distribution center in the city of Nusajaya.[citation needed]


The company has at least one sales outlet in Germany.[24]


The company has at least one site in Hungary,[25] which started operations in 2009.[9]

Fastenal Racing[edit]

a Fastenal racing transportation truck

Fastenal has sponsored a number of NASCAR events and drivers, most prominently Carl Edwards.[26][27]

Esteban Gutierrez[edit]

In 2011, Fastenal featured Esteban Gutierrez as its sponsored GP2 Series driver,[28] showing solidarity[citation needed] with Mexico where it has operations.[28] Esteban Gutierrez's second GP3 Series had been sponsored by Fastenal in 2010.[29]


In 2006 and 2007, Fastenal Racing sponsored the No. 18 Dodge and Bobby Hamilton Racing in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series.[29] 2006 saw Bobby Hamilton Sr. and Bobby Hamilton Jr. participate, and in 2007 driver Kenny Schrader took the front seat.[29] A television commercial for the company was also produced this year.[20]

Fastenal sponsored the Chip Ganassi Racing entry, the No. 40 Dodge[14] with Felix Sabates and lead driver Dario Franchitti,[14] in the 2008 NASCAR Nationwide Series.[29] In 2009, Fastenal Racing began a partnership with JR Motorsports.[29][30] Dale Earnhardt Jr,[29][30] Scott Wimmer,[29][31] Ryan Newman,[29][31] and Ron Fellows[29][32] were seated in the No. 5 "Fastenal Chevrolet" for 14 out of 21[29][30] 2009 NASCAR Nationwide Series races.[30]

For the 2010 NASCAR Nationwide Series Fastenal Racing began its storied partnership with Roush Fenway Racing[33] and Carl Edwards.[34] He was seated in the No. 60 car, and Fastenal sponsored 15 out of 21 races.[29] Carl Edwards remaied in the No. 60 Ford for the 2011 NASCAR Nationwide Series,[35] and Fastenal sponsored 15 out of 21 races.[29]

Starting in 2012, Fastenal will be the primary sponsor for Carl Edwards in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Sponsoring him in 17 events including the 2012 Daytona 500. In 2013 the company continued to sponsor NASCAR through Roush Fenway Racing and Carl Edwards in the No. 99 Ford.[35] The season started at the Daytona 500 where Carl Edwards crashed out half way through the race. Edwards went on to win the second race of the season at Phoenix International Raceway while driving the Subway #99 Ford. Fastenal will be the primary sponsor of the #99 Ford for the races at Martinsville Speedway (4/7), Texas Motor Speedway (4/13), Talladega (5/5), Charlotte All-Star (5/18), Charlotte (5/26), Michigan (6/16), New Hampshire (7/14), Indianapolis (7/28), Pocono (8/4), Bristol (8/24), Chicagoland (9/15), Dover (9/29), Kansas (10/6), Charlotte (10/12), and Phoenix (11/10).


Fastenal location in Macomb, Illinois

Fastenal has retail stores in every US state,[25] every province of Canada,[15] 14 Mexican states,[15] and Puerto Rico,[25] and Panama.[25]

As of 2011, the company operates 16 distribution centers in California, Georgia, Indiana, Kansas, Minnesota, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Utah, and Washington, in the cities of Denton, Texas, and Houston, Texas, in the Canadian provinces of Alberta and Ontario, in the state of Nuevo León, Mexico, and in the Malaysian city Nusajaya.[36]

As of 2007,[14] Fastenal operates its own freight fleet in order to reduce highway transport costs.[19]

The location of the first Fastenal site,[7] Winona, Minnesota, has now become that of the company's headquarters.[36] By 2005, a central collections office had been established in Caledonia, Minnesota, 40 miles (64 km) south of Winona.[19]

Machining is a better term for many of Fastenal "manufacturing" operations. As of 2000, the company employs 400-plus people at "six" manufacturing locations,[9] including one manufacturing bolts made using a newer method, cold heading, in Rockford, Illinois,[9] an operation in West Hartford,[9] Connecticut, and another in Malaysia, etc.[9] These sites are probably joined by others in Indianapolis and in Modesto.[20]

Fastenal has sites in China, Dominican Republic, Hungary, Malaysia, the Netherlands, Germany, Singapore, and the United Kingdom.[25]

In 2006, the company had two offices in Taiwan, one of which included a product testing laboratory,[20] which, as of 2007, was A2LA certified.[14]

Controversies and criticism[edit]

The company has settled at least two lawsuits, and its corporate culture may lead some employees to criticize.

Government contract debacle[edit]

In 2010, the company paid a settlement to prevent litigation resulting from a 2005 cessation of a United States General Services Administration contract.[13]

Employee class-action controversy[edit]

In 2008, Fastenal paid a $10 million settlement to a class-action lawsuit. The company was alleged to have failed to pay overtime to some employees. Filed by former Fastenal Assistant General Managers who accused the company of misclassifying them as exempt from the federal Fair Labor Standards Act and corresponding state wage and hour laws in California, Oregon, and Pennsylvania, these plaintiffs were represented by Nichols Kaster, PLLP.[37] Fastenal has denied the allegations but said it settled "in order to avoid significant legal fees, the uncertainty of a jury trial, distractions to Fastenal's operations, and other expenses and management time that would have to be devoted to protracted litigation."

Worker satisfaction survey[edit]

Fastenal was ranked the 24th worst place to work in America, according to a survey in 2009.[38] As of 2012, uses self-selected employee informants to call Fastenal "OK"[39] although as late as 2011 its rating was the lower "dissatisfied".

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Fastenal Company Reports 2011 Third Quarter Earnings" (Press release). Globe Newswire. 2011-10-13. Retrieved 2011-10-16. 
  2. ^ Fastenal Company (FAST) Stock Report
  3. ^ a b c d UPDATE 1-Fastenal Q3 results beat market estimates, Tue Oct 12, 2010 8:33am EDT
  4. ^ a b c d Fastenal Co (FAST.O)
  5. ^ a b c d e About Us (Video) Fastenal official site
  6. ^ US STOCKS-Futures slip as dollar firms, Tue Oct 12, 2010 7:39am EDT
  7. ^ a b 40+ Years of "Growth Through Customer Service" Fastenal Official Site
  8. ^ Company Leadership: Biographies; Robert A. Kierlin Fastenal Official Site
  9. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n President’s Letter to Shareholders (2009) Fastenal Official Site
  10. ^ a b c d e President’s Letter to Shareholders 2004 Fastenal Official Site
  11. ^ a b Supply Chain Diversity: A Message From the Fastenal Supplier Diversity Team Fastenal Official Site
  12. ^ UPDATE 1-Fastenal Q2 profit beats Street, Tue Jul 13, 2010 8:35am EDT
  13. ^ a b Fastenal Company Settles Dispute Fastenal Official Site, January 13, 2011
  14. ^ a b c d e f g President’s Letter to Shareholders 2007 Fastenal Official Site
  15. ^ a b c d e Fastenal Company to Acquire Holo-Krome Company Fastenal Official Site, December 9, 2009
  16. ^, Fastenal to Replace Fannie, Freddie in S&P 500, September 9, 2008 17:45 EDT
  17. ^ a b c d e f g h President’s Letter to Shareholders (2008) Fastenal Official Site
  18. ^ Direct Import Services: Global Sourcing with Domestic Service Fastenal Official Website
  19. ^ a b c President’s Letter to Shareholders 2005 Fastenal Official Site
  20. ^ a b c d President’s Letter to Shareholders 2006 Fastenal Official Site
  21. ^ "SCOPE OF ACCREDITATION TO ISO/IEC 17025:2005: FASTENAL COMPANY LABORATORY - MALAYSIA". Fastenal. 9 October 2012. Retrieved 30 July 2013. 
  22. ^ "Southeast Asia Fastenal". Fastenal. undated. Retrieved 30 July 2013. 
  23. ^ "Locations > Malaysia". Fastenal. undated. Retrieved 30 July 2013. 
  24. ^ Fastenal Europe Fastenal Official Site
  25. ^ a b c d e Home > About Us > Company Overview > Distribution Overview Fastenal Official Site
  26. ^ Fastenal Racing site
  27. ^ Fastenal Racing – Carl Edwards
  28. ^ a b Fastenal, Esteban Announce 2011 Partnership Fastenal Racing Official Site, January 17, 2011
  29. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l Fastenal Racing: Fastenal History Fastenal Racing Official Site
  30. ^ a b c d Fastenal Partners with JR Motorsports Fastenal Racing Official Site, January 16, 2009
  31. ^ a b Newman, Stewart, and Wimmer to join strong driver line-up in 2009 Fastenal Racing Official Site, March 16, 2009
  32. ^ Drivers: Ron Fellows Fastenal Racing Official Site
  33. ^ Looking to the Start of 2010 Fastenal Racing Official Site, January 25, 2010
  34. ^ Fastenal to Sponsor Carl Edwards in 2010 Fastenal Racing Official Site, December 4, 2009
  35. ^ a b Fastenal Kicks off the 2011 Season at Daytona Fastenal Racing Official Site, January 19, 2011
  36. ^ a b Corporate Locations Fastenal Official Site
  37. ^[dead link]
  38. ^ List of top U.S. places to work: survey, Wed Dec 16, 2009 12:07am EST
  39. ^ Fastenal Reviews, accessed on: 01/05/12

External links[edit]