Talking NAFEM With Ben Casey of Arctic Industries

We recently sat down with Ben Casey, Arctic’s Vice President of Sales to discuss all of the exciting things the Arctic team has planned for the upcoming NAFEM show. A slightly edited transcript of the conversation can be found below.

Ben, you recently joined Arctic, and just in time for NAFEM, we just wanted to hear about your background. 25 years in the food service industry, I’m sure you’ve learned a lot, how did you find your way to Arctic after all that?

Ben: I’ve enjoyed being a part of the food service industry, really for my whole professional career. Arctic is a perfect opportunity for me and after talking with the leadership; I knew this is where I wanted to be. There is a tremendous vision for the future, and I saw the opportunities for significant growth and market share in foodservice and beyond. I’m excited about joining a leadership team that’s really looking to grow in culture and offerings to partners and customers alike.

Thanks for sharing. NAFEM is a bit of your coming out party, so to speak. What do we have to look forward to? Why is this year’s NAFEM show important in your mind after the last show being canceled? What can Arctic’s partners expect to see, experience, learn at the 2023 NAFEM show?

Ben: Sadly, I don’t want to think that I’m this old, but I counted, and this is going to be my 13th NAFEM event. NAFEM has always been one of those things where there is a lot of anticipation around the event itself. This one is going to be special because of having a gap year or technically multiple years, where we were not able to meet as an industry. This is an opportunity for everyone to come together face to face, but there’s a lot of anticipation around what’s happening this year. What does Arctic have to offer, what’s new, what are you most excited about. There’s a lot that’s been going on in the world since 2019 and therefore a lot has been happening in our industry. The anticipation of really focusing on customer needs from an engineering and value standpoint excites me the most. The ultimate chance to differentiate from your competition and to say, “Hey, we’re here, and we are here to stay.”  Our mantra of “Engineering Reimagined” includes our manufacturing, but also how we engineer our customer support and sales processes.

What are your goals for the event? In terms of who your core audiences are, the reps, the dealers, and then ultimately the end user and the client.

Ben: Our focus initially is going to be partnering with our Rep organizations and getting 2023 off to a fast start. We’ve had several new additions and folks that have come on board since we showcased at NAFEM last. It’s an opportunity for them to get to some face-to-face time with our RSM’s and brainstorm together as a team. There are a few new faces at Arctic as well, including mine. It will be a great opportunity to see how we have transformed as a company since 2019. For customers, we are focused on helping folks to understand, whether it’s the end user, consultant, or a dealer / distributor partner. We’re there to tell you more about what Arctic’s doing and what we have to offer. This is where our high-quality stands and being so engineering focused, is going to stand out more than anything else. From our interactive 3D design tool, Media Kit, or world class Customer Service team, there is so much to collaborate on with our partners and clients.

What can people look forward to beyond just the new faces and getting in touch again with old friends? What’s going to happen at the show for Arctic?

Ben: We are investing heavily in marketing to generate opportunities for our partners and resources for our customers. Being able to provide more tools for our partners and dealers is where we’ll start. A virtual tour of an Arctic Cooler, Floor Rating display and data are just a few things that will on display. It won’t just be the Arctic staff telling our story but showing our whole interactive approach from training to showcasing our latest offerings.  Not to mention some very fun SWAG that we have for our guests, what do you think, Julia. (Senior Marketing Manager)

Julia: We’ve got so much fun “SWAG” this year. We surveyed customers and partners to decide on what to bring. We are entering our visitors into drawings for Amazon Gift Cards of $200. We are also showcasing a multi-function custom booth that we’ve had made just for the NAFEM event. It’s highlighting, not only what Arctic can do, but some fantastic accessories from our partners that we can offer in a Arctic cooler. You can meet one-on-one with any of our Regional Sale Managers and learn about all things Arctic. One of the things that our CEO, Brian Murphy, is very proud of is that we will be introducing our floor testing machine. The customer is going to be rolling things in and out of those coolers, and our machine will show that this floor will hold X amount of pounds of rolling weight. This is a huge opportunity for us to really understand what we can offer our customers and how we can better meet their needs.

Ben: Julia is correct, we will be allowing our customers to feel empowered to know exactly what they’re purchasing and set performance expectations for their investment. Everyone’s got to answer to their own budgets, and I think this is going to be what really sets us apart. Nobody else is doing this and we want to showcase it at NAFEM. People are there to learn, gain peace of mind, and to know what differentiates manufacturers in engineering and customer service. With Arctic’s Customer First culture, we believe this can only be done in person.

Where can people find you at NAFEM Booth? Number location, any of that good stuff you want to share?

Ben: The best thing to do is book a slot on our website. These spots are rapidly filling up, yet we will find a way to meet with everyone, booth, show or offsite for coffee or a cocktail. We want to speak with you and pick your brains to find out how Arctic can be better in all facets of cold storage. I am not exaggerating when I say it’s the best time to connect with our team. Aside from the “SWAG” and our giveaways, this will be the best marketing material we have ever had and a wonderful opportunity to learn more about us. Come visit the Arctic team and don’t look back, you will be happy to that you made time to learn about the Arctic Advantage!

Perfect, thank you both so much for your time!