ControlOMatic, an award-winning manufacturer of saltwater chlorine generators, is bucking inflation by lowering prices on some of its most popular models. In a time with supply chain issues and the highest inflation rates in decades, this business strategy seems to be headed in the wrong direction.
"It's not that we had these huge profit margins, to begin with," says CEO Melinda Kohnke. "We've been running pretty lean, and supply chain issues were a problem for us last year."
How, then, can ControlOMatic lower prices in today's inflationary climate?
Kohnke explains, "With the full support of our owner, Scott Lenney, we made some bold changes in the face of the current economic challenges. One of the biggest was to move the company into a very large commercial manufacturing facility, which in turn allows us to manufacture substantially more products in a single run. We also brought a mechanical engineer in-house for product design reviews and quality control improvements. Small changes can have a big impact, and our product improvements have been tested and implemented. Last fall, we hired a new operations manager to help us navigate the supply chain shortages. She has been able to hunt down components and parts to keep us well stocked."
ControlOMatic has products on the shelf ready to ship, something they struggled to do for part of last season. Many parts were purchased in bulk, six months in advance, to avoid being out of stock.
"The bottom line," Kohnke continues, "is we can build more products in a streamlined fashion with better quality control, which has allowed us to drop prices for the first time. We are very excited about serving our loyal dealers and customers this season!"
Pool supply chain challenges continue to permeate the pool industry, with the highest inflation rate in decades.