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Simplistic support.

Simplistic Support

Theatre is coming to merchandising: Lights, camera, Truss! Truss? A light guage metal support system, Truss is the new product being introduced into the merchandising business by Simplex Truss System Inc. of Little Rock.

The idea of using truss as a merchandising technique came "from me," says John Rogers, owner of Simplex. "Truss will be a direct merchandising technique for the new millennium."

Despite being only two years old and a small company, Simplex expects to earn one-half million dollars this year from local and national product sales.

The product is often confused with a tool that is used in construction; however, Simplex's truss, which is manufactured in Mountain Home by Metal Specialties, is sold on a much lighter scale and cannot be used to construct buildings.

Dan Mistic, design and production coordinator, and Rogers use truss to build equilateral triangles in three different sizes that fit together to form a merchandising product and lighting support system. Mistic says these triangle "enable you to make all kind of things. You can use it for lighting support when you want to lower the ceiling if you have a really high ceiling."

Although Simplex has three competitors on the East and West Coasts and in the Southeast, it is spanning the country with truss in everything from grocery stores to nightclubs.

The company also has many local triumphs. Both Elle in The Heights and the new Harvest Foods in west Little Rock are using the merchandising technique, in addition to Sun Bay Sports Club in Hot Springs, one of the company's major clients.

A typical project costs between $5,000 to $10,000, with a once-a-year update for about the same price.

Two years ago Mistic and Rogers brought the merchandising idea from Mexico to Arkansas because of problems in delivery and the language barrier. Simplex went shopping for a new manufacturer and decided to brings its business back home.

"Bringing the work home to Arkansas was an easy decision," Rogers says.

It was also a smart decision. Sales rates have tripled since the first of the year, and with an in-state manufacturer, Simplex has been active in new product development. And the scenic drive to Mountain Home to study and test new design prototypes isn't too bad either.
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Title Annotation:Venture; new display technique from Simplex Truss System Inc.
Publication:Arkansas Business
Date:Oct 22, 1990
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