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David Berney, owner/operator of Roadrunner Distributing, a distributor of car care products located in Northern ColoradoRoadrunner has an interesting history. It’s been a car supply store in Fort Collins, Colorado since 1967, the days of souped-up cars and loud exhaust. Jim Santner bought the company in 1986 from his high school friend who had recently inherited it. Jim was only 23 years old at the time. He had graduated from CSU (Colorado State University) and had just one job before he decided to take the entrepreneurial leap. Even his boss at the time encouraged him to ‘go all in’ on this venture, saying: “You can call the business Roadrunner, since it’s about keeping cars humming happily along on the highway.”


Jim borrowed funds from his father to make his car supply store a reality. Back then, it had a sixth of the inventory it has today and he knew customers by name, keeping their records by hand in a journal. They were all local to him and, as he drove around in his delivery truck with that familiar ‘roadrunner’ logo emblazoned on the side, they often came out to greet him in the parking lot. Many of those customers or their children are still on the active log books today.


Jim made it a conscious practice to emphasize car supply knowledge and pair it with friendly, old-fashioned customer service. He did everything himself – checking all his customers’ inventory, ordering and delivery and keeping up with automotive trends and innovations. His wife paid the taxes while Jim kept everything else going smoothly.


Amazingly, he was certain to have the stock that his customers needed but he never used a computer. His pencil was always sharpened though, and his memory was amazing. Eventually it was time to bring his business into the 21st Century. He approached long-time associate and entrepreneur David Berney and proposed he buy Roadrunner.


David Berney came with extensive experience running an auto repair facility in midtown with his dad. He already understood the needs and time pressures shop owners face every day. He instinctively put customer service first. It was a perfect fit.


Two years later, Roadrunner Distributing and David are doing fantastic together. Jim continues to drive the route that takes him to repair shops and truck stops and convenience stores up and down I-25 – and David is taking the business onto the Internet. Roadrunner today is an e-commerce store of the highest caliber, serving the entire USA with a fundamental belief in doing business the old fashioned way, on the new fangled web!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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1404 Webster Avenue  Fort Collins, CO  80524   |  970-214-3003