From mobile devices and wearables to smart thermostats and self-driving cars, many of the microchips and capacitors behind today’s high-tech devices likely spent time on one of the endless aisles at Mouser Electronics in Mansfield.
The world’s largest electric parts distributor has been riding the wave of technological innovation, growing in profits and volume while also creating jobs and expanding its footprint at its 750,000 headquarters and at 22 other locations worldwide.
Mouser focuses on business-to-business, getting its parts from more than 700 manufacturers and then selling them to engineers and inventors around the world. The booming Internet of Things industry is one of the biggest drivers for the company’s rapid growth.
Mouser is the largest private employer in Mansfield and is seeking Texas Enterprise Zone status so it can be exempt from state sales tax. Its first distribution center in Mansfield was built 1983. Three years later, the company relocated its headquarters to Mansfield, too.
As one expansion finishes up, Mouser is already working on the next one. Mouser just opened a customer service center in Ontario, Canada, this month. And in April, Mouser opened the expanded office in Guadalajara, Mexico. In Mansfield, Mouser expanded last expanded its warehouse in 2016. That project included a $650,000 grant from the Mansfield Economic Development Corp. Later this year, Mouser will expand the warehouse by another 125,000 square feet. That project is scheduled to be completed by 2020.
Mouser has already taken over the former church on the north side of Mouser Way, converting the sanctuary into storage and the daycare into a health clinic and gymnasium for its employees.
Mouser will continue growing north with plans for a 50,000-square-foot office that will house customer service and sales departments, freeing up space in the corporate office, said Pete Shopp, senior vice president of business operations. The building is designed so it can be doubled to 100,000-square-feet in the future, Shopp said.
The zoning change for that building is going through City Council. If approved, Shopp said construction could start later this year and could be open in 2019.
Mouser will also add about 200 parking spaces.
Today, the warehouse handles an average of 60,000 items per day for 16,000 orders that go around globe. In all, Mouser stocks 890,000 products on its shelves with a goal of reaching 1 million by the end of the year.
Mansfield’s facility has nearly 1,600 employees with more than 100 job openings available in the warehouse and another 60 in the corporate office.
“Our HR is pretty busy right now,” Shopp said.
The new customer service center and warehouse projects could add even more jobs.
Mouser typically operates 24 hours a day from Sunday evening until Friday evening. The busiest day is Monday when Mouser schedules 10-hour days. Workers in the overnight hours restock the shelves. Lately, business has been booming so much they’re working some Saturday shifts, too.
As Mouser has grown, so too has Mouser Way, pushing farther eastward with each new building. The final stretch of Mouser Way connecting FM 157 to the southbound U.S. 287 frontage Road is expected to open by July 15, city engineer Raymond Coffman said.
Having highway access will make it more convenient for the delivery trucks that constantly come and go from the warehouse.
Mouser often fulfills 1,000 orders in the final hour alone.
Mouser doesn’t just distribute semiconductors, it uses the latest technology to make its own operations more efficient.
An entire section of the warehouse has been remodeled to accommodate large automated storage towers that retrieve components to fill orders at the push of a button. Two of the towers wereinstalled a few weeks ago and Shopp said they plan to add 41 more soon.
The automation doesn’t mean job cuts--there are so many jobs that machines can’t do, Shopp said.
Conveyor belts crisscross the newest section of the warehouse, carrying orders of various sizes to the shipping docks in the back, where delivery trucks await.
Looking toward the future, Mouser still has room to expand the Mansfield facility with another 20 acres behind the existing warehouse, Shopp said.