Explore XMEK’s customization-driven path to global expansion

Formerly known as ERIKS Seals & Plastics (Eriks), XMEK Ltd is the go-to partner for personalized and unbiased component solutions. With expertise in application engineering, material selection, and distribution supply chains as well as an unparalleled product range, encompassing seals, engineered plastics, fittings, bearings, gaskets and hardware, XMEK is empowered to tailor solutions to meet customers’ specific needs. Backed by its deep understanding of engineering, materials, and supply chains, the company ensures the optimal material is sourced from reputable manufacturers and delivered on time from its extensive local stocking warehouses. XMEK consistently exceeds customer expectations across various markets, including energy, aerospace, defense, infrastructure, heavy equipment, hydraulics, medical, food, agriculture, and many more. 

“Although XMEK is often recognized as a specialty distributor, we see ourselves as bridging the gap between being a manufacturer and a distributor by offering comprehensive engineering and logistics solutions. What sets us apart from typical distributors is our technical expertise, supported by our in-house lab and dedicated chemist on staff. Armed with extensive industry knowledge, we provide unbiased solutions tailored to our customers’ needs,” begins Brad Daggett, Director of Supply Chain.  

Customer commitment 

Equipped with all these tools and experience, XMEK is proficient in delivering customized engineering and logistics solutions. “Our key specialty lies in providing compound solutions for specific materials and applications. A notable statistic is that we maintain roughly $20 million worth of inventory across our network. While over 80 percent of this inventory is specifically allocated and sold to a single unique customer for each item, this does not mean that one customer accounts for 80 percent of our total product sales. Rather, it highlights our commitment to providing customized solutions to individual customers, ensuring their specific needs are met with precision. This approach differentiates us from traditional distributors who typically serve multiple customers with a broader range of products they already have in stock,” Brad elaborates.  

Empowered for growth 

Moving onto the recent rebranding to XMEK, Brad reveals that this strategic decision was made to allow separation from previous ownership and to facilitate the transition to a matrix leadership model. “Historically, our company has deep roots within Eriks, a Belgium-based company established in the 1940s. Eriks expanded its presence in North America in the 1980s, and we were one of four companies that operated under the corporation’s umbrella in the continent for a significant period, until the 1st of April 2022. At that time, Eriks divested its North American business, leading us to transition away from the Eriks name within 18 months. Hence, we had to choose a different trading name and officially rebranded on the 1st of March 2024 as XMEK, which symbolizes excellence in mechanical components. While we wanted to honor our heritage and the recognition Eriks brought us in the marketplace, being a subsidiary of the European company provided us with limited autonomy and individual attention throughout the years. However, our new owners acknowledge us as a standalone company, empowering us with resources, capital, and the freedom to create our own path for business growth, which is great,” he explains. 

Working in a warehouseDue to its unique business model, XMEK’s supply chain management is a vital area of focus for the company, striving not to overwhelm its vendors. “We handle our work with suppliers very carefully, almost on a one-by-one basis. Our approach is to work as a team with our supply chain, along with our engineering, materials, and customer-facing sales departments. All three departments work very closely with our key suppliers establishing a strong link between our customers and vendors. By effectively communicating the application requirements and customer needs, we enable our suppliers to provide the best solutions. Internally, we explore our options to find the optimal solution and subsequently proceed with presenting the customer with a range of options based on our expert judgment, offering what we believe to be the best course of action. To further support our supply chain, we have implemented various processes and technologies. From a purchasing standpoint, we prioritize digitization by leveraging technologies like Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) and employing a sophisticated forecasting methodology. Furthermore, we regularly evaluate vendors through a scorecard system to ensure their performance aligns with our expectations. Our materials department develops its own unique formulations and works cohesively with our trusted manufacturing partners to create proprietary blends tailored to our customers’ requirements,” Brad continues.  

Strong culture 

Across its relationships with the supply chain and indeed, all other aspects of the business, XMEK places a strong emphasis on respecting the core values upon which it was founded. “The leadership team’s unwavering focus on fostering a strong company culture distinguishes us from the competition. Since the rebranding, we have adopted a set of core values that we stand by and consistently promote to our employees and customers. These values are summed up in the acronym DRUCKY, helping us remember what we strive to be. DRUCKY represents our dedication to being driven, respectful, providing unbiased solutions, maintaining a customer-centric approach, fostering knowledge, and embodying a ‘yes we can’ attitude. XMEK upholds these values in every facet of its operations, including how we engage with customers and how we approach the recruitment and selection of individuals within our organization,” he enlightens. 

Currently focused on acquisitions, XMEK is actively fueling its future growth. “Recently, we completed the acquisition of Everseal Gasket Inc. (EGI), a small gasket manufacturing company in Kansas, which was a perfect fit for our business. Moreover, we have several additional acquisitions in the pipeline that will hopefully be finalized within the next six-to-12 months. When considering new business acquisitions, we seek companies that align with our niche and have products that can be integrated and enhanced within our portfolio. We strive to stay unique in our offerings by delivering products and services that set us apart from other organizations, thus adding value to our customer base,” Brad states. 

With a strategic vision to triple its size, XMEK aims to optimize its distribution network over the next three-to-five years. “This expansion will not only allow us to extend our reach but also to create new positions within the organization and to propel our growth,” he ends.