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Columbia Business Monthly

Air Compressor Services Employees Help Drive Company’s Growth

Nov 08, 2023 01:16PM ● By Angelia Davis

Air Compressor Services (ACS) was founded in 2012 with just two employees in Greenville County’s Poinsett District. 

Today, the company has 43 employees, global sales, and a new honor recognizing its growth.

For the second consecutive year, ACS has been listed as one of South Carolina’s 50 Fastest Growing Companies, an honor bestowed by Integrated Media Publishing, in partnership with The Capital Corporation.

ACS, a leading distributor of industrial air compressor parts and services, ranked in the top 20 on the 2023 listing and was cited with 56 percent growth. Companies are ranked using a weighted average of full-time employees and income growth over three years. 

The company was also ranked for two consecutive years on the Inc. 5000 list of fastest-growing private companies and as one of the Best Places to Work in South Carolina.

Greg Aiken, head of marketing at ACS, credits the honors, in part, to the company’s selection of employees.

“I think we’ve hired right,” he said. “We have hired a lot of people that are like-minded. We are all very diverse in terms of where we come from, but we have hired people that are all kind of collaboratively working toward a united goal

“When you have a lot of people who share the same vision, I think that is why we’re winning top workplace, as well as growth awards,” Aiken said.

ACS has less than 5 percent voluntary employee turnover. It experienced 168 percent three-year growth between 2020 and 2022, according to Aiken.

“We are seeking to create a culture where our employees have the opportunity to achieve personal and professional goals that they never dreamed were possible, which ultimately affects our customer experience,” said ACS founder Neal Shade in a written statement. “We firmly believe our growth as an organization is a direct result of our team being excited to come to work on a daily basis and putting the needs of our customers first.”

Years ago, Shade’s father owned a business similar to ACS, Aiken said.

Shade, having grown up around that business, was encouraged to start his own, he said.

ACS is headquartered on Custom Mill Court in Greenville, where it got its start.

In the last two years, ACS has expanded to four different warehouses and a fifth space in the near future that will be used for office space, Aiken said.

In the next couple of years, ACS plans to build a new world headquarters on space it has secured next to a FedEx distribution center near Interstate 85.

“We serve a global market, but it’s right here from Greenville,” he said.

The company primarily sells and partners with manufacturers.

“You cannot do manufacturing without compressed air, so we say air is like the hidden power people don’t consider,” he said.

ACS’ vast customer base includes ski resorts for blowing snow, the LA Times for printing newspapers, and casinos use the air compressors for their dryers, Aiken said.

But “a majority of it (compressed air) is used to make tools, and one fun thing about this space is we’ve probably served at least 75 percent of the Fortune 500 manufacturing companies.”