John Kontur, a carpenter by trade, founded Akron Building Closeout Materials (ABC Materials) in 2011 after his addiction to purchasing cast-off materials from lumberyards for his restoration business got out of hand. He took over the old Sacks Electric building in Akron, Ohio, and began selling off his collection of goods to customers looking for a bargain. He aims to have his materials cost "70% of retail or less," Mary Beth Breckenridge writes for the Akron Beacon Journal. Though Kontur only works at ABC Materials part-time, he still runs his restoration business, he finds the time to help his customers with their projects. Breckenridge writes:
Finding creative uses for his goods and helping customers turn their visions into realities is one of his purposes, he said. He’ll do what it takes to make their projects possible.
For one customer, for example, he helped design a top for a kitchen island from live-edge pieces of walnut and maple, laying the pieces out on the floor to create the right arrangement.
For another, he had the store cut pieces of lumber to the exact lengths needed for shelves and sanded the boards smooth. “All they had to do was take them home, put them in, put a finish on them,” Kontur said.