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The Claflin Company

Delivering sales, service and expertise since 1817...

On behalf of the employees and management of Claflin Equipment, we would like to welcome you to our website.  It is a credit to the dedication of our employees and customers that we continue to flourish after almost two centuries of business.

We hope you enjoy learning about Claflin Equipment by reading about our storied history below.  Claflin Equipment is eager to carry on our long tradition of servicing the healthcare market by providing our hospital equipment, medical supplies and medical equipment to you.  We will continue to provide a strong focus for the future with our ongoing research into new and improved products.

All of us at Claflin Equipment look forward to working with you to fulfill your healthcare hospital equipment and medical equipment needs.  Our relationship with you is important and we are committed to earning your business throughout the years ahead.

Company PhotoWho We Are
Claflin Equipment is a leading medical equipment specialist company serving hospitals, clinics, surgical centers, and general practices in the New England Region, and now nationwide and abroad through our secure online website.  We represent the finest medical equipment products available, but that's not all.  Claflin Equipment covers the complete sale by providing a full service package including delivery, installation, training, maintenance, and much more.  View our faqs page regarding delivery, installation, training & service.

Claflin Equipment's parent company, the Claflin Company, founded in 1817, is now the largest independent medical supply provider in the New England region.  Claflin Equipment is the Claflin Company's medical equipment specialist company.  With 190 years in the business, Claflin is one of the oldest suppliers of medical supplies and equipment, and we have stayed successful by keeping on the top of the latest developments and by maintaining a commitment to complete customer satisfaction.


THE CLAFLIN ADVANTAGE
The Claflin team provides an unbeatable total package of products, service, and support.  When you chose Claflin Equipment, you can be confident that your order will arrive on time and budget.  This is the Claflin Advantage:

  • In Business since 1817
  • Focused on Equipment
  • Expert Equipment Repair
  • Over 100,000 products from 1,000+ manufacturers
  • Dedicated Sales Representatives
  • Project Management
  • Staging Service
  • Delivery and Installation* (faqs & terms)
  • Training & Consultations
  • Turnkey Projects
  • Team Approach
  • Flexible Policies
  • Highly Trained & Skilled Work Force
  • Immediate Decision Making

PRODUCT SELECTION
Claflin Equipment carries a full line of the highest quality medical equipment products available.  We are constantly re-evaluating and improving our product line so you can get the best equipment possible.  Our sales staff stays abreast of the latest developments in the industry and maintains regular communication with manufacturers so we can be sure that you're getting the best they have to offer.

THE HISTORY OF CLAFLIN

    The Claflin Company has been in existence for approximately 190 years.  First established in 1817 by then president of the company Joseph Balch, the company was located at 66 South Main Street in Providence, RI.  Originally called the Joseph Balch Company, it was remained within the Balch family and continued to grow as J.B & Son, until the Claflins, George L. and Arthur W., purchased the firm in 1873, and renamed it the George L. Claflin Company.

   Under the guidance and directorship of the Claflins, the company grew tremendously and became, in 1886, the leading retail druggist and apothecary firm  in the New England states.  The company was an importer and jobber of everything needed by a druggist or chemist.  At the time it created and manufactured many of its own pharmaceutical formulas, and employed 20 full time pharmacists.  Along with the pharmacists,, they also employed 5 full time store clerks and three traveling salesman.  At the time Claflin also sold many sundry items and fancy toiletries and perfumes.

   As business goes, it held true then as it does now., you can't keep things status quo and expect to survive.  The Claflins were quite aware of this and being the industrious family that they were, expanded the company to provide chemicals and acids and other supplies for the rapidly expanding jewelry industry.  By the 1900 the Claflin Company also had the exclusive rights to distribute Dupont Paints for New England.  During these growth years the company now occupied 62-72 South Main Street.

By 1904 the company was incorporated as the George L. Claflin Company.  Since 1873 the company doubled its warehousing space and increased its business three fold.  Besides distributing a complete line of drugs, chemicals, patent medicines, surgical equipment and instruments, jewelers' supplies, the company expanded to manufacture fluid extracts, tinctures, and compressed tablets as well as distribute laboratory supplies.

As the years went by the Claflins began to lose their grip on some of the exclusivity of the lines that they distributed.  In 1930, with the competition increasing and the company seeking to increase their retail market, the company paid $200,000 for warehouse and retail space and moved to 150-160 Dorrance Street.  Like many others in the Depression, the 30's were not kind to the Claflin Company.  Increasing monetary problems forced the company to go out of business temporarily in 1940.

In 1940 after closing its doors for several weeks, the George L. Claflin Company reopened in its new location at 40 Mathewson Street, Providence.  Dr. Albert W. Claflin and three young employees decided to give it a go.  They were moderately successful and stayed in the 15,000 square foot facility for 19 years.

By 1959 the company employed some 22 employees and was continually growing in sales.  Some more familiar names for those of us who have been around awhile now come into focus.  The company had a Board of Directors headed by George H. Duggan, President; Pasquale Faruolo, VP-Treasurer and Registered Pharmacist; William J. Rinaldi, Secretary, Asst. Treasurer, and Office Manager; Kirk Smith, Attorney; and Pasquale Valone, Sales Manager.  The old Mathewson Street facility was to be razed by the city to provide a parking lot, so the company relocated to the old Nicholson File building at 1 Acorn Street, Providence, occupying some 17,000 square feet of warehouse, office and retail space.

As retirement age neared the Board of Directors, the company was then sold in June 1976 to its present owners - the Almon Company.  Under the guidance of President and CE0, Ted Almon, the company in a matter of 5 years outgrew the Acorn Street location.  In November of 1981 the company once again moved and relocated to 1070 Willett Avenue in East Providence, RI.

With the increased warehouse space the company now had a facility to properly store and ship goods of its ever-expanding business.  In December of 1987, the company took an aggressive step in eliminating some of the competition by purchasing the medical division of Pilgrim Medical Supplies.  With the increase of close to $10 million in sales the company retained a firmer grip, and spread its sales territory to all of RI, southeastern MA, eastern Connecticut and Boston.

Ted Almon realized that just buying sales to increase the company's growth would not be enough.  He then proposed the idea of JIT to Women & Infants Hospital.  As clearly evident there may have been some bumps in the road but the idea worked.  Claflin is now viewed as the leader in the medical industry for JIT distribution and advanced logistics programs.

In 1996 Claflin formed a working agreement with Metropolitan Supply Company.  Eventually that working agreement turning into the purchase of some assets of Metropolitan, and its business was absorbed into the Claflin Company in February '97.

Once again with an increase in sales and JIT accounts, the East Providence and Woburn Ma. locations were no longer adequate. In July of 1998 the company moved its warehouse to Airport Industrial Park, 465 Industrial Drive, Warwick, RI., and consolidated its headquarters there in  2001. 

Today The Claflin Co. is recognized as one of the medical distribution industry’s leading independent firms with an exceptional reputation for innovative service programs and a dedicated team of associates focused on the needs of the customer.  The entire Claflin family looks forward to working with you.  Our relationship is important and we are committed to earning your trust as well as your business for many years to come.