By Lindsey McClain, Chamber Intern
The origins of Phillips Tube Group can be traced all the way back to 1967, when the late Ralph Phillips opened his machine shop in Shelby, Ohio. From there he grew his business, adding new locations, new contracts and a streamlined way of producing products. He saw a need for the work he did and he used this to create a highly profitable family business—and a true family business it was, with his daughter Angela Phillips learning the ropes since she was just thirteen years old.
Highly engineered steel tubes are the central products that Phillips Tube Group provides. These highly formed tubes are used for automotive parts, HVAC systems, appliances, construction work, and so much more. Although everything produced is purchased for further manufacturing, Phillips Tube Group ensures that quality and care are put into every product. This is why a number of household names continue to trust them for their parts. They work with names such as: Whirlpool, Lenox, GM, Ford, Chrysler, Dodge, Toyota, and Nissan. Phillips Tube Group has become a household name for steel tubing and is now the largest manufacturer of heat exchanger tubes in the household market. Even today under new guidance their customer satisfaction continues to shine through.
Following her father’s passing, Angela Phillips took over as CEO in 2009. She knew a great deal about the business from her father and her time spent working there. This prior knowledge as well as her degree in economics has allowed her to be a key point of success for Phillips. Her main struggles as a new business owner came with navigating a global market and using trial and error to fill in the blanks. Another struggle for Angela was that she was now a leader in a male dominated field. While women make up 47% of the workforce, they only comprise about 30% of the manufacturing industry. She addresses this by encouraging more women to step into non-traditional roles, often opening up opportunities for women that weren't always considered. She says, “I am very pro women in the workplace, whether you are a plant manager or a sales rep.” She feels that this way of thinking and these initiatives modernizes them as a company. It has also granted them the title of the “largest, independent, woman-owned manufacturer of precision steel tube in the U.S.A” and the WBENC certification as a woman-owned business.
Since stepping into her position Angela has prioritized the expansion and reach of Phillips Tube Group. In October of 2020, she opened her 3rd location in Wayne County and quickly became a new and welcome part of the community. She has appreciated not only the monetary benefits offered to her by the county, but also the support she’s received. Angela has been proud of the flexibility her new team has shown in getting the building ready for business and has loved watching them rise to the occasion time and time again.
Phillips Tube Group has a lot to be proud of. The success of three locations along with nationally recognized products is no small feat. Despite this though, they never fail to show up for their own communities. Ralph was a huge proponent of giving back, calling it a “corporate responsibility.” This spirit of generosity thrives today as they continue to donate to and assist a number of local organizations and projects, many times anonymously. For Angela, and her mission at Phillips Tube Group, developing relationships and giving back to the community is important for the sake of themselves not for the popularity of the business.
Phillips Tube Group of Indian
401 Industrial Pkwy, Richmond, IN 47374
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