Chad's Creative Concepts

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Chad's Creative Concepts designs and manufactures wood
furniture. Founded by Chad Thomas on the banks of Lake
Erie in Sandusky, Ohio, the company began by producing
custom-made wooden furniture for vacation cabins
located along the coast of Lake Erie and on nearby Kelly's
Island and Bass Island. Being an "outdoors" type himself,
Chad Thomas originally wanted to bring "a bit of the outdoors" inside. Chad's Creative Concepts developed a solid
reputation for creative designs and high-quality workmanship. Sales eventually encompassed the entire Great Lakes
region. Along with growth came additional opportunities.
Traditionally, the company had focused entirely on
custom-made furniture, with the customer specifying the
kind of wood from which the piece would be made. As the
company's reputation grew and sales increased, the sales
force began selling some of the more popular pieces to
retail furniture outlets. This move into retail outlets led
Chad's Creative Concepts into the production of a more
standard line of furniture. Buyers of this line were much
more price sensitive and imposed more stringent delivery
requirements than did clients for the custom line. Customdesigned furniture, however, continued to dominate sales,
accounting for 60 percent of volume and 75 percent of
dollar sales. Currently, the company operates a single
manufacturing facility in Sandusky, where both custom
and standard furniture is manufactured. The equipment is
mainly general purpose in nature in order to provide the
flexibility needed for producing custom pieces of furniture. The layout puts together saws in one section of the facility, lathes in another, and so on. The quality of the finished
product reflects the quality of the wood chosen and the
craftsmanship of individual workers. Both custom and
standard furniture compete for processing time on the
same equipment by the same craftspeople.
During the past few months, sales of the standard line
have steadily...
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