Family ties and old friendships are the foundations of what built LaserEquipment, a local cartridge recycling company who recently moved to Martin City. Started by a father and son in a basement back in 1989 when typewriters were king, Daryl Ochs and Ken Elder would take old cartridges, toners and printers into to their basement and repurpose them on the spot. Once rebuilt, they began selling the repurposed products to customers. It was clear, they were on to something.
Since refurbished products were significantly less expensive for companies to purchase than new materials, LaserEquipment’s repurposed products began flying off the shelves. They quickly outgrew their basement headquarters and opened locations in Joplin, Springfield, and Omaha, and ultimately moved their main headquarters to Merriam, KS. They were pumping out, on average, over 6,000 new printer cartridges per month. Large corporations began to take notice, and now, most of their clients are nationwide companies.
The key to LaserEquipment’s success is a good product. You’ll find no assembly lines because they hire people to completely break down the product and rebuild it. When you make a purchase, you can rest assured that a human being not only built the product but tested it themselves before shipping.
After working as a team for 24 years, Farrah Walker took over operations, sales, and marketing in August of 2014. Walker comes from another family-owned business, Perfect Output, who had already been doing business with LaserEquipment for a number of years, so Perfect Output saw the value in purchasing the company and keeping it running. Working closely with family and customers is LaserEquipment’s key to continued success through the years.
“We are able to focus on the customers and can personalize every product to fit their particular needs,” said Walker
When Walker’s family purchased the company in September of 2013, they knew they would need a new location for the growing company. The move to Martin City seemed like an obvious one for Walker. With companies like Infinite Energy Construction already in place, Walker saw an opportunity to further grow the Martin City industrial scene.
“Growing up, I would visit Martin City once or twice a week. Many of my family’s favorite restaurants are here. This place is like a second home to me” said Walker.
Walker puts family first at LaserEquipment. “We take great pride in our people and we want them to feel like they are a part of a family,” said Walker. “We want people to take care of each other while they are at work.”
Mike Rice, the owner of the LaserEquipment building, is a name that is brought up frequently when talking about the success of the company. Rice is also another reason why they moved the company to Martin City. After months of negotiations on the property, the two became quite close. Rice often shares his contractor resources with Walker as well as advice on how LaserEquipment can best accomplish what they need. Because of all this, Walker considers Rice a fatherly-mentor and part of the LaserEquipment family. “He’s another plus to why we moved our headquarters to Martin City,” said Walker.
The City of Kansas City, Missouri, Jackson County, and the Martin City Community Improvement District have been investing millions of dollars into improving Martin City. As a result, property owners have been reinvesting and new businesses like LaserEquipment have opened up shop in Martin City.
Walker says she is thrilled to be a contributor to the growing success of Martin City. “I get really excited about all the growth in this area. There’s a lot of land out there that could be put to use and would do our community a lot of good,” said Walker.
With the Honeywell Federal Manufacturing and Technology Plant just five minutes south and the CenterPointe Intermodal project underway, it’s exciting to forecast what Martin City’s future looks like!
Martin City offers property for lease or sale, real estate for retail, office, or warehouse, and options for redevelopment or new construction. Available real estate within the boundaries of the Martin City Community Improvement District can be found our site locator. If you know someone interested in exploring a real estate opportunity in Martin City, please contact the Executive Director of the Martin City CID at (816) 308-1023.