NASHUA, N.H. (Sept. 4, 2003)—What do 55 pounds of hamburgers, 35 pounds of hot dogs, 20 pounds of meatballs, 20 pounds of kielbasa and 65 pounds of wings add up to?
At Maynard & Lesieur Inc., a tire retailer/wholesaler in Nashua, it added up to a big party to celebrate 75 years of doing business in the same place where founder Leo H. Lesieur first opened the dealership on June 1, 1928.
“Very seldom do you see the same company in the same location for 75 years,” said Treasurer Roland Lesieur, son of Leo Lesieur. Maynard & Lesieur hosted 400 guests—its wholesale customers and their families—at its biennial open house in June, though with this year's milestone, all of the Lesieur family and the company's employees pitched in to make the open house a success.
The dealership gave away $10,000 in merchandise, raffled off prizes and featured games for the children in a celebration that mirrored a carnival. Attendees earned “bonus bucks” on tire purchases with which they could use towards free merchandise. A sales manager from Michelin North America Inc. presented Maynard & Lesieur a plaque commemorating its 75 years of service.
Originally founded as a gas station, Maynard & Lesieur began selling tires about five to 10 years after its establishment. Today, the dealership has a four-bay tire outlet and a warehouse across the street that stores about “$2 million worth of inventory,” according to Mr. Lesieur.
Maynard & Lesieur employs 40 and posts $9 million in annual sales, 35 percent of which is wholesale, 25 percent retail and 10 percent commercial. The rest of the business is in aftermarket accessories, according to President Steve Lesieur. A family business, the dealership is run by Steve, his father Roland, brothers Larry and Mark, and sister Cheryl Applestein, who works part-time in the office. Steve's three children—Brian, Abby and Lynn—also have worked part time or full time when not away at college.
Roland Lesieur admitted the wholesale business outside of Nashua has decreased over the years because dealers want fast deliveries several times a day.
But he said the company's local wholesale business has been increasing and should offset losses in out-of-town business.
The secret to the company's success even during tough times, he said, has been its location in the center of downtown Nashua and its talented employees.
“If you've got strong, knowledgeable, honest, local people, you're going to hold your own,” Mr. Lesieur said.