Washington Evening Journal
111 North Marion Avenue
Washington, IA 52353
KDK Sales and Equipment has grown quickly over the past five years and recently built a new building on its equipment lot.
The farm implement business started in July 2016 when Greg Koch and his wife, Heather, started selling consignment farm equipment out of their home farm in Washington.
Koch moved his operation to the lot at 214 S. Airport Road in 2017, as business began to boom and his inventory grew.
“We needed a place to showcase equipment other than our home farm, and as the business grew rapidly, the lot allowed us to serve the consumer without having to manage public traffic on my home place,” he said.
Last fall, Koch built a large office and shop building on the lot, providing an office and working space for his employees. His employees had been working out of an office on his home property for some time before that, he said.
The building has a shop, a spacious garage that can house equipment, a front reception area and a few offices.
“We had the lot, and we developed it, we built a shop and office there where our staff can operate out of efficiently and better serve our customer,” he said.
A big portion of KDK’s business model is consignment. When a customer wants to sell a piece of farm equipment - whether it’s a tractor, combine or trailer - KDK will give a value estimation and then advertise it online and facilitate the sale for a commission, taking the work off the farmer.
“We can go to the customer, answer the calls, we do all the work, we turn around and hand the consignor a check when it’s all done,” Koch said.
In addition, KDK sells several lines of equipment new, and it holds equipment auctions if sellers want that option.
The company uses an online platform to hold auctions. Koch said the COVID-19 pandemic has made online auctions more popular.
“The searchability and market discovery that the internet provides and the tech savvy of the average producer out there has increased dramatically in the last few years, and the online platform has really exploded,” he said.
The lot outside KDK is filled with used equipment from various brands like John Deere, Case IH, New Holland and others. The brands it sells retail include Thunder Creek, M&W, Duralight, Rhino and Ogden equipment.
Koch said KDK is the top dealer in the U.S. for Thunder Creek fuel trailers, top in North America for M&W Hay trailers, and was the largest dealer in Iowa this year for Rhino hay equipment.
While there are other retail dealers in Washington and nearby areas, Koch said he saw an opening for consignment sales and combining multiple avenues of sales for consumers.
“Nobody merges one-stop shopping like we do as far as having new equipment and a large quantity of quality used equipment on hand at one time,” he said.
Koch has a background in sales and agriculture, originally working for another equipment retailer before starting his own business. He said he has a passion for what he does and for helping people.
“I like sales, I like people,” he said. “Some customers need to buy and some need to sell. I like putting two problems together to form a solution.”
When he opened KDK sales in 2016, Koch’s original plan was to operate the business on the side while keeping his other job, but he said after only three months he quit that job and jumped into the business full time.
Koch said he’s happy to work in Washington, with a strong agriculture community and loyal customers. He said customers express gratitude often that his shop exists, saying there’s a need for the type of service he provides.
“I’ve got a lot of really loyal customers and people that come back month after month and year after year for something,” he said. “I’m really grateful for that.”