Flint Based Diplomat Heads to IPO Today

By Amanda Lewan on October 10th, 2014 / Comments

Looking to invest in a Michigan made company? We invite you to check out Diplomat, the nation’s largest independent specialty pharmacy, headquartered in Flint, Michigan. The company celebrates their IPO today.

Founded over 39 years ago, CEO and Chairman Phil Hagerman says they just kept on growing, as any business should.

“We were one of the fasted growing, older companies in our industry,” said Hagerman. “Nobody should ever think that just because you’ve been around for a while you’re in a slow growth period. You’re never to old to create new opportunities for your business.”

In 2005, Hagerman says they launched a national distribution center and since then compounded their growth by 65%. From 2005, annual revenue increased from 27 million to 1.5 billion.

The distribution center is Flint was once an old GM plant. When they moved into the building in 2005 there had 295 employees. Today they have over 1,000 and most are coming from the Genesee Country. At this time, Hagerman says they were considering other locations down south but decided to work with the community of Flint to stay and expand.

Dayne Walling, Mayor of the City of Flint welcomed and helped garner support for the expansion.

“We saw the willingness to choose Flint as it’s long term corporate headquarters,” said Maror Dayne Walling. “The community already trusted the brand from being here for so many years. There was incredible support behind the expansion.”

The results have been impressive, helping lead to today’s IPO. Being located in Flint gave the company access to lots of talent from the nearby University of Michigan. The Midwestern work culture was a factor that helped keep the company in Michigan.

So, how does this CEO feel today as he rang the bell on the New York Stock Exchange? Excited and ready to get back to work.

“We feel like today is a culmination of hard work, but we also opened a new chapter of growth,” Hagerman said. “Our relevancy in our industry requires us to step up to the company.”

Hagerman said they did not start the company with a vision for an IPO in mind. In fact, he advices Michigan entrepreneurs to not think about the IPO but to think about growth instead. He also advocated the opportunity to capitalize on Michigan’s advantages for entrepreneurs.

Photo via Diplomat. f

 

About the Author

Amanda Lewan

Amanda Lewan

Editor @michipreneur. Co-founder Bamboo Detroit. Follow me @Amanda_Jenn. I love telling the story of entrepreneurs and innovators.