Padnos Collects Trader Honor

May 12, 2006
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HOLLAND — Louis Padnos Iron & Metal Co. is this year’s World Trader of the Year, according to the West Michigan World Trader Association.

The company was honored at the annual awards ceremony and reception May 9.

Shelley Padnos, executive vice president, said she is flattered and honored that the company was chosen for the award.

“We do think of ourselves as world traders — and we have been world traders for a long time, actually — but I don’t think the community necessarily looks at us in that light,” she said.

The program that led to the company’s nomination is the exporting of nonferrous metal, which has grown every year for the last 10 years, Padnos said.

“The shipping of exports is not new for us,” she said of the 101-year-old company.

Padnos said her father, Seymour Padnos, and uncle Stuart Padnos had a vision of seeing the company as an exporter.

“I think it was their early vision that put us in position to be major players in the scrap export market,” she said.

The export market has helped keep the company competitive, Padnos said.

“We’re able to keep all of our customers competitive, as well,” she said.

Melissa Kail, president of the West Michigan World Trade Association, said Padnos has been ahead of the times in international exporting.

“They’ve been able to get out there in the marketplace and provide products that we would not be able to use in the manufacturing process here,” she said.

The West Michigan World Trade Association has presented the award annually to a business, individual or organization that demonstrates commitment to international trade in the region since 1977. Past award winners include The Right Place Inc., Amway Corp., Ferris State University and Bissell Co.    

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