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Fastenal and Make48 Partnership | Creating Solutions

Make48 has partnered with the supply chain company that also happens to be the largest fastener distributor in North America. Fastenal has committed to supporting the 2022 City Series and the sixth season of Make48.

Fastenal remarked on the new partnership, “As a company that believes good people in the right spots can make a difference, we want to help empower others on their journey. Plus, innovation is in our blood. If we weren’t consistently finding new ways to improve, we’d have never become the world leader in industrial vending. So, together with the team at Make48, we hope this partnership can help current and future generations grow skills that will help communities for years to come.”

Make48 CEO Tom Gray described why this partnership was one of the priorities of Make48. “Our relationship with Fastenal will tick many boxes for us. Quality, Organization and Time Savings. Fastenal not only carries a full line of parts and accessories that we can now have on-site, it will give all the teams and technicians a quicker advantage without having to leave the Makerspace. With collaboration first and foremost key to Make48 events, all techs share the equipment and have to know where tools are, at all times. Not only can the Fastenal locker system house vast amounts of tools and equipment, we can easily see what's available with a quick glance or determine who has possession of a missing tool.”

Headquartered in Winona, Minn., Fastenal was founded in the late 60’s and started out by distributing threaded fasteners to businesses in small, nearby cities. Fast forward to today, and Fastenal now operates in approximately 3,200 in-market locations (a combination of public branches and customer-specific Onsites), each providing custom inventory and a dedicated sales team to support local customers. Today, Fastenal is many things to many different customers.

M48: Fastenal is a multi-faceted company (industrial products, safety solutions, consultants, etc.) What is Fastenal best known for?

Fastenal: Those who work with us know Fastenal’s strength comes from our people. We help lots of organizations secure their supply chains, and that’s possible because we have a great team around the globe.

Fastenal first opened in 1967, and by the 1990s had become the largest fastener distributor in the U.S. How has Fastenal forged ahead of competitors and made their presence known in a sea of options and technology?

People depend on us for the health of their supply chains. So, when two-day shipping was everywhere, Fastenal worked to get even closer to those who needed us. Why wait 48 hours for something you really need today?

So, we created Onsite programs at thousands of locations around the world. Each one is custom to the local needs. We monitor inventory levels and make sure the right items are where they need to be.

The Fastenal vending machines and locker units are unique, save time, and have been widely adopted by machining industries and makerspaces nationwide. How do these devices help makers and what are some key features?

Proximity matters. The same way an Onsite brings inventory closer to where it’s used, lockers and vending machines move tools and PPE right where workers need them the most. No need to walk around and hunt down a new pair of safety glasses, just walk over to the vending machine, punch a few buttons, and you’re ready to go. Plus, they can send data to the cloud so you know how your inventory is being used.

Bloomberg noted that Fastenal is a company whose demand hasn't slowed down in this economy. Where do you see Fastenal in the next few years? (Bloomberg LINK)

Because we focus on proximity, we are closer to our customers than ever before. This is a trend we see continuing. Working closely with the individuals at our customer locations will allow us to keep following our company motto: Growth Through Customer Service.

Fastenal was recently recognized by the University of Wisconsin-Stout as its Employer of the Year. They were honored for their effort to engage with students on multiple levels during the 2021-22 school year.

Learn more about Fastenal and their services. Visit

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