Exponential Growth In a Pandemic: The Story of ZLINE Kitchen and Bath
At the beginning of 2020, Reno-based appliance manufacturer ZLINE Kitchen and Bath prepared for another incredible year of growth.
ZLINE has established a high-end luxury appliance presence with many major home improvement retailers, including Home Depot, Lowe’s and Wayfair - offering their collections online. The National Kitchen and Bath Association’s annual Kitchen and Bath Industry Show (KBIS) in February 2020 brought even more exposure to big box retailers, which was a huge step forward for ZLINE.
To meet expected demand, ZLINE quickly increased manufacturing orders for all of their kitchen appliances and bath fixtures at its overseas factories - one of which is wholly operated by the company. The timing of their orders in 2020 gave the company a nine-month supply of products in their U.S.-based distribution centers.
By 2021, as supply chain issues for consumer products began to delay projects, ZLINE was able to fulfill orders promptly while many other manufacturers could not keep up with glaring demand.
"Looking back, the timing was perfect,” said Mason Watkins, director of marketing. “We were gearing up for an incredible growth year as a result of partnerships with new retail outlets and began to stockpile inventory in our warehouses. The expanded inventory gave us the ability to fill orders during the height of the pandemic when other manufacturers were telling customers there would be long delays."
As ZLINE’s popularity skyrocketed, so did the need for new employees in the Reno, Nevada area. As other businesses laid off employees due to the pandemic, ZLINE hired numerous new team members.
"The fact that we had inventory to sell and that people were discovering our products online - and ordering them - meant we had to hire people quickly," said Watkins. "Over the past year and a half, we have hired about 60 percent of the company. Not many companies grow this quickly, and we are proud to provide additional jobs to our community. Best of all, we've retained nearly all of those employees."
Watkins says the company has grown between 80 and 100 percent per year over the past four years.
"The growth of ZLINE Kitchen and Bath from a small company that designed range hoods, to now a national brand is an incredible story," said Jim DeVolld, managing director, commercial banking at First Independent Bank. "Through hard work, smart growth and a clear understanding of the kitchen and bath market, Andrew Zuro has propelled the company into the kind of growth most businesses can only hope for."
ZLINE has seen much success over the years, yet it remained somewhat unfamiliar in Northern Nevada. This turned into a great opportunity for growth and partnership with Jim DeVolld and First Independent Bank.
"Jim DeVolld has played a key part in expanding awareness of our name and our products right in our Northern Nevada community," said Watkins. "He's made important introductions on our behalf and helped us build relationships so that our products are more available in local showrooms and retail stores. The local home builders know about us too, and they are using our products in their new build contracts."
All ZLINE collections are designed by Founder and President Andrew Zuro and are inspired by the neighboring landscapes of Lake Tahoe, Nevada. ZLINE's headquarters are in Reno, Nevada, with additional offices and warehouse locations in Ohio and Tennessee. The company is in the process of building a second warehouse in Tennessee and looks forward to continuing its growth as an economic contributor to Northern Nevada.