Summit Electric

Wholesale Change:
From Industrial to Electrical: Summit Electric CEO Ed Gerber Takes on a New Market 

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About this event

Ed Gerber, CEO of Summit Electric Supply, joins us on this episode of Wholesale Change. Before joining Summit Electric, Ed was the CEO of the Industrial Supply Association (ISA) after holding a number of senior executive roles for industrial distributors.  

We ask Ed what it was like to switch from the industrial industry to electrical. During our conversation, we explore topics like sales force optimization, digital transformation, value-added services and what it takes for a regional distributor to compete effectively against global players. 

Ed has been highly successful during his tenure at Summit, even though he joined the company less than a year ago. It’s his first CEO role with a distributor, so he’ll tell us what it’s like to be in the top seat compared to other senior executive roles he’s held.

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About our guest:

Ed Gerber

President & CEO, Summit Electric Supply

Serving as Summit’s President & CEO, Ed Gerber brings a deep understanding of industrial supply channels. With 30+ years’ experience in executive leadership roles in distribution and manufacturing, he built, led, and turned around organizations.

Known as an entrepreneurial-driven-business builder, Gerber’s expertise is growing successful businesses organically or through M&A. 

From 2016 to 2021, Gerber has been the President & CEO of the Industrial Supply Association, the premier trade association for the Industrial MROP Channel. Prior to that, as Executive Vice President - Sales & Marketing for the Industrial Distribution Group (IDG), he led the reengineering and execution of IDG’s Integrated Supply and Industrial vision/strategy focused on the end-user first which led to the acquisition by Sonepar in 2014.

During this transition, Gerber helped lead the integration of IDG and Hagemeyer, which has since become Vallen. Before IDG, he served as Vice President of Sales & Marketing for the Sandvik CTT group leading the Precision Twist Drill, Titex, and Prototyp brands for North America. In this capacity, Gerber reengineered the salesforce through a mix of direct and independent reps to leverage the combined product and distribution portfolio for the German round tool brands. He successfully repositioned the organization and offering to become part of Walter Tools, ultimately strengthening the overall brand value for the end customer and industrial channel. Gerber has served on the Summit Electric Supply Board of Directors since May 2018. 

About our hosts:

Ian G. Heller

Founder & Senior Partner, Distribution Strategy Group

Ian Heller is Founder & Senior Partner at Distribution Strategy Group, and has more than 30 years of experience executing marketing and e-business strategy in the wholesale distribution industry. He has written and spoken extensively on the impact of digital disruption on distributors.

Jonathan Bein,

Managing Partner, Distribution Strategy Group

Jonathan Bein, Ph.D. has worked with many distributors to make their marketing a profit center. He has developed and applied analytic approaches for customer segmentation, customer lifecycle management, positioning and messaging, pricing, and channel strategy for distributors.