State forces Kan-Am Products to move; company also likely to expand into roofing

WICHITA — Terry Donovan is planning to move and expand his Kan-Am Products, but only one of those decisions is his choice.

The business is moving from 1323 S. Bebe to 1830 W. Harry, which is between Seneca and Meridian, because the state is buying his property for road work.

“The overpass here at 235 and 54 is going to go over the back part of my building,” Donovan says.

“They were fair on the property,” he says, but he adds, “You never recoup everything.”

Nor does he like to move.

“I hate it,” Donovan says. “It’s never fun.”

His company, which he started in 1988, is a wholesale distributor of vinyl siding, vinyl, wood windows and decking.

Donovan’s existing building is about 17,000 square feet on about half an acre. The new space is about the same size but spread over a couple of buildings on about three acres.

He says he needs the extra space because he’s most likely expanding his business to include roofing materials.

“It takes a lot of room to bring roofing in,” Donovan says.

He thinks diversifying with roofing can help the business.

“We just think to go forward we need that to make it viable.”

Donovan says his warehouses in Oklahoma City, Tulsa and Dallas are doing well.

“They’ve come back to what they were,” he says. “Wichita just hasn’t. Wichita is just slower than heck.

“We’re doing probably 30 percent less than we were five years ago, and I don’t think we’ll get it back, either,” Donovan says. “We haven’t had a lot of good news here.”

He thinks the Dallas warehouse, which he added in 2011, is going to be his best market.

Still, business in general is difficult, Donovan says.

“It’s just kind of like kicking the can down the road.”

The move has been a distraction, though not necessarily a welcome one. Donovan says for the past couple of months, he’s been spending a half to a full day every day on the move.

“You don’t think you do, but then you think, well, I’m working on that again,” he says. “Just on and on and on. There’s just something always to do.”

Like the Dallas warehouse opening, the upcoming move and business in general is affecting his golf game.

“It still sucks,” he says of his game. “I’m not having any fun anymore. I’m working too hard.”

He figures his friends will try to come to his rescue when they read about his golf woes.

“They will be sending a cab over to pick me up Sunday mornings.”