Vacation leads to Ascheman’s building successful business that grew through 50 years

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Ron Ascheman, left, stands with Fred Barth at the old station in Danvers back in the late 1960s.

Fifty years ago Ron and Donna Ascheman packed up their kids in the car and headed out of Minneapolis for a week’s vacation back home in the Holloway area. A stop for gas in Danvers changed their lives.

While filling up, Ron Ascheman talked with Clinton (Short) Carruth who told him that he was looking to retire after 40 years as a bulk agent for Mobil Oil gas sales. He asked Ascheman if he would be interested in taking over for him.

At the time, he had a good job working for a construction company in the Twin Cities. “Donna and I went home and gave it some thought and decided to give it a try,” Ron Ascheman said.  

“It was quite easy to get into business as I would be called a consignee, meaning Mobil owned the bulk plant, truck tank, and all products in bulk plant.  All I had to buy was the truck,” Ascheman said. Mobil Oil owned the accounts receivable of the business and gave Ascheman 120 days to collect on his sales. After that, unpaid bills would come out of his commission check. Fortunately, most of the customers paid their bills.

At the same time, the Mobil Appleton area bulk sales agent was looking to retire as well, so Ascheman ended up with both.

From that day in June 1966 to June 2016, the Aschemans built a successful business that thrives today. But building it involved long, long hours and lots of time on the road.

Ascheman had a little bit of a head start in his sales effort having built up his connections in the area before leaving for the Twin Cities. His parents had owned a gravel business in the Danvers-Holloway area where he worked doing deliveries until he was midway through his 21st year. A lot of his stops were at farm places in the Danvers area. That experience would help him when he came back. “I knew a lot of the customers in this area, so I knew where to go to pound doors,” he said. “And that’s what I did.”

Pictured is Ron Ascheman, left, with Fred Barth at the old station in Danvers back in the late 1960s.


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