Reflections on the Entrepreneurial Journey

Ken Hendricks, ABC Supply
Livia Corona
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Ken Hendricks: In Praise of Modesty

Named Inc.'s Entrepreneur of the Year in 2006, largely for his entrepreneurial work in helping to revitalize his hometown of Beloit, Wisconsin, Ken Hendricks is perhaps best remembered as the common man's entrepreneur. His building supplies company, ABC Supply was a No. 1 Inc. 500 company and hit $3 billion in sales in 2007, just before he passed away after falling from a roof. Despite his huge financial success, Hendricks always kept the business small at heart. Speaking to Inc. in 1991 about the importance of frugality in business, Hendricks said: "We still buy used, but nice, furniture. My desk came from somebody that had gone bankrupt. I've thought about the tears that had to fall on that desk, and it's something that reminds me every day I'm not going to let this happen to me."