After spending 25 years in Sales and Engineering for high tech, Darrel Boyd and partner Jay Malhi turned their eye to the stone business. It was only after 8 years of car pooling 3 hours per day they finally found a business opportunity that would allow them to strike out on their own. Little did they know just how much hard work and fun they had invited upon themselves. These days Jay handles importing and general business operations while Darrel specializes in sales and marketing. Both have traveled the globe learning and shopping the world of natural stone. Their technical backgrounds have allowed them to bring new ideas to an industry that dates back beyond the Roman Empire. High tech also taught them a great deal about customer service and quality control.
Jagroop immigrated to California with his family from Punjab India. He was just 10 years old. He and his family worked many jobs including farm labor for years until they had saved enough money to buy their own raisin farm. By the time he graduated from high school the family was able to help Jagroop attend college. He graduated from Fresno State with a degree in Engineering. After spending time as an Engineer on large dam projects, he came back to California and was quickly recruited into the circuitboard industry. Jagroop established himself as a talented engineer and manager and quickly advanced. Eventually he brought his family in 1998 to Oregon to begin working as and Engineering Manager for a Praegitzer Industries in Dallas Oregeon. Eventually that plant was sold to Tyco Printed Circuit Group and Jagroop was promoted to a Corporate Engineering Manager.
Darrel is an Oregon native born in Newport and raised in the Willamette Valley. He attended Oregon State and graduated with a degree in communications. Working primarily in sales, he ultimately moved to high tech. Working with a company developing interactive display systems for electronics retailers of every size. It was a highly creative sales position that required a great deal of dialog between customers and engineers. He was quickly promoted to National Sales Manager and traveled the country visiting big box retailers. After showing a knack for computer programming and technical problem solving Darrel unexpectedly was offered a Corporate Engineering position with Praegitzer Industires. That’s where he and Jagroop met for the first time. Since they both lived in the Portland area and drove 1½ hours each way, they decided to start car pooling.
During all those hours and all the miles together, Darrel & Jagroop discussed a number of business ideas. In fact, the stone business came up more than once. The problem was how to get started. It just so happened counterparts working in and with Tyco Printed Circuit Group on the east coast had started their own stone businesses as the high tech bubble burst in 2001. The EleMar Group was up and running with two locations in Virginia and Connecticut. Soon Darrel and Jagroop were on a plane to explore opening an EleMar Warehouse in Oregon. They liked what they saw and began developing a business plan. In April of 2005, after having spent 3 months cleaning and preparing a 10,000 sq ft warehouse in Tualatin, EleMar Oregon was born. Their reputation for customer service and family atmosphere helped them to grow from 100′s of slabs to 1000′s of slabs. Their newest location houses over 2000 slabs within 27,000 sq ft.
Friendly professional customer service and innovative approaches to slab handling and safety have set EleMar Oregon apart from other suppliers. The process of selecting and installing slab countertops can seem daunting to say the least. As an importer and supplier EleMar is dedicated to an educational mission to help customers feel comfortable and confident in their decision making process. There is nothing more important that knowing you’re making an informed decision when it comes to natural stone or man made solid surfaces.
Jagroop and Darrel feel very lucky to be in the stone business. They feel doubly blessed to be in business in the Northwest. ”This is where we live” says Jay. ”We have a family business here so integrity and credibility are extremely important to us.” So no matter where you are in your project, you’ll do well to check out what EleMar has to offer. You should find a huge selection of quality stone slabs and a staff that is eager to help. ”If we keep our focus on great selection and customer service”, says Darrel. “The rest of our business should continue to take care of itself.”