Streakwave Wireless was founded in 2000 as a distributor of outdoor wireless equipment. "We carry everything from amplifiers to cabling to lightning protection, and we stock everything in San Jose, California," says company president Carl Moberg.
Moberg says two of Streakwave's key differentiators are its range
of products and its location. "We take a lot of care, and we don't
just sign any product linesand we stock the product here in San
Jose," he says. "There are distributors that are central U.S. and East
Coast, but the reality is that there aren't that many on the West Coastand
we're right smack dab in the middle of Silicon Valley, which doesn't hurt."
The benefits of being located in Silicon Valley, Moberg says, reach far
beyond just the ability to deliver orders quickly to clients. "The new
products are being developed hereand the guys come by and they buy
pigtails from us, and we see the stuff that isn't really out yet," he
says. "I enjoy that part of it."
In addition to the company's own perspective on quality product, Moberg
says Streakwave often responds to client requests for new product lines.
"If at a sales meeting we hear over and over that there's a specific product
that people are using and we don't offer it, then we look into getting
it," he says.
Many of Moberg's employees come from the WISP industrywhich he
says helps the company advise customers on their needs. "We don't just
hire any sales guy off the street," he says. "The guys here all have a
lot of experience, and some of them have run WISPs. Collectively, I think,
we have more experience in this arena than most."
Thanks to that range of expertise, Streakwave does everything from troubleshooting
problems over the phone to full design and implementation. "If a company
calls up and they need a point-to-point installed, we'll do the whole
thing for them," Moberg says.
If it's not feasible to travel to the company's location, Moberg says,
he often refers such jobs to other Streakwave customers. "We have a lot
of really good customers that do thatit's what they do for a livingso
we like to refer those leads to our customers as well," he says.
Moberg says the ability to offer that kind of support has led to a number
of interesting projects. "We sell up/down converters to NASCAR for the
in-car cams that you see," he says. "BMW Oracle Racing yachts, the America's
Cup winners, we did all their wireless. And we've done a lot of stuff
for the military. We get a lot of people calling and saying, 'This is
what I want to do,' and we sit here and figure out a way to do it."
Pricing and delivery
Moberg says Streakwave tries to stay price-competitive, but doesn't feel
it's crucial to have the lowest price in the market. "Price is not usually
why we lose business," he says. "The only time you lose business in this
market in my opinion is from bad service, or because you don't have the
product on the shelf."
And he says there's lots of room in the marketplace for other distributors.
"There's all kinds of resellers popping up every day," Moberg says. "We
actually do a lot of fulfillment for those guys. There are a lot of different
websites out there, e-stores, that when you order something from them,
it's actually shipping from our warehouse."
For speed of delivery, Moberg says Streakwave's location makes all the
difference. "We're located five minutes from the airportso for overnight,
we have the latest in the nation, I think, just because we're on the West
coast," he says. "You call us up Friday at eight o'clock on the East coast,
and we can still get a product out for Saturday delivery for you."
To take advantage of that capability, the company strives to keep all
products in stock at all times. "Generally, when we can't get things,
it's because the manufacturer can't make it fast enoughand often
that's because it's a hot new product," Moberg says. "So for our vendors,
for any new products that they release, we'll put in a P.O. before they
even manufacture the stuff so we have it on the shelf for launch."
The company recently launched a new e-store that provides full inventory
management for vendors and in-depth account management for resellers.
"It ties everything together so our accounting, our inventory or purchasing,
our point of sale for the vendors, everything is all tied into one," Moberg
says. "It's a huge projectit's been a year in the worksso
I'm hoping that it makes it a big difference, and that it makes the customer's
experience a lot easier and a lot smoother. That's really what it's all