In the late 1940’s, our company’s founder, Jules Austin, entered into an agreement with two gentlemen from Germany to sell stamped metal goods, (e.g. sink strainers and flat steel keys). When the business relationship became strained, he decided to strike out on his own.
In 1951 Mr. Austin occupied a small space in his brother's company, Harry Goldstein Company, located at 18 Warren Street in New York City. There he founded Craftmaster Hardware. Jules initially sold general hardware along with screws of all types. The flat key portion of the business was eventually sold to Taylor Lock Company. Jules recognized a need for inexpensive bit keys and began importing products from Germany. In 1956 he moved to his own space down the block at 12 Warren Street with help from his brother Phil and gradually shifted from general hardware to key blanks and then to a full line of locksmith supplies.
In January of 1957 his son-in-law, Herbert Spingeld, joined the firm, eventually becoming President. Herbert's son Michael came on board in 1982 after learning the locksmith trade. Herbert retired in 1986, passing the torch to Michael Spingeld who would remain as President of Craftmaster Hardware Co. Inc. until 2015. The company relocated to New Jersey in 1986, moving to expanded facilities in 1992 and finally settled in their present location in 2002.
Anthony (Tony) Cani joined the company in 1990, becoming a partner in 1993. Tony's expertise in sales and marketing blended perfectly with Michael's passion for organization and tight financial management. Mike and Tony became great partners and close personal friends. The company enjoyed steady growth and profitability by maintaining a simple philosophy of offering their customers a vast selection of product at fair prices with superb customer service and employing extremely knowledgeable sales people.
In 2015 Craftmaster Hardware was acquired by Capital Resource Partners, a Boston based private equity firm that invests in companies with proven business models and strong positions in attractive, and often times niche markets. Also in 2015 Tim Grogan joined Craftmaster as Chief Executive Officer, bringing over 25 years of leadership experience in the distribution industry. Tim’s vision is to capitalize on what differentiates Craftmaster, excellence in customer care, and to invest in technology to accelerate growth.
We are grateful for the opportunity to have served our many customers for over 60 years and look forward to growing with you for many more.