Amsdell Companies: A Storehouse of Real Estate and Development Knowledge

Amsdell Companies is a privately owned family of real estate and development companies based in Cleveland, Ohio. The family business has been around since 1928 in a number of incarnations; it started as a construction company, and has since been active in several billions of dollars worth of real estate ventures with a primary focus on self storage. Today Amsdell Companies’ main focus is a subcompany specializing in self storage: Compass Self Storage LLC (Compass).

Todd Amsdell, president and CEO of Amsdell Companies, took the reins from his father Robert and his uncle Barry. Todd now draws inspiration for leadership from the previous generation. “My uncle was the president of a construction company and my father was a lawyer,” explains Todd. “That was a big part of their management style.”

Todd keeps Amsdell Companies running smoothly by keeping lines of communication open with both his employees and clients. Amsdell Companies achieves this by having affiliates employ around 80 people between the home office and individual storage facilities.

Storage Solutions

Compass is Amsdell Companies’ driving business venture. “We have 20 centers,” says Todd, who continues to look for opportunities to expand. Compass has established a market presence in Florida, Kentucky, Michigan, Mississippi, New Jersey, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Tennessee. One of the locations, Sarasota, Fla., is a four-story center, which Todd says is the company’s largest.

Amsdell Companies has developed a user-friendly business model for Compass, boasting affordability, easy to understand terms of use and helpful staff members. Compass’ mission is to ease the burden on customers, many of whom are in the already stressful process of moving. The centers offer units of varying sizes and price ranges to fit a wide range of customer needs. Customers can choose automatic and online payment options to save paperwork and avoid messy mail situations between residences or businesses.

Every center offers climate-controlled units for people or businesses with more delicate needs. Businesses may also opt for delivery acceptance; this means that inventory that needs to be stored is received, recorded and put in its place by the staff at Compass. For larger inventories, businesses can opt for organizational solutions like shelving to keep stock accessible without using company resources to go check on the storage unit.

Maintaining Growth

Amsdell Companies has not been stalled by the slow economy, despite the pressure on many of its clients and business associates. Todd credits the company’s strong network with keeping the business sailing smoothly. “We continue to make sure we’re maintaining good relationships with the banks, our suppliers and our tenants,” he explains. “And we reinforce that our management team is maintaining good relationships with our team members.”

Todd says his biggest expenses are manpower and the cost of acquisitions. Amsdell Companies has purchased several stores in the last year alone. His company’s good reputation with lenders keeps acquisitions possible. Quality service – in addition to clean, safe-storage centers and other commercial properties – ensures that the investments in property and manpower are paying off.

Amsdell Companies also owns four business parks: three in Ohio and one in Florida. Other real estate ventures involve development, management and construction. The construction aspect of the business relies heavily on subcontractors. “We have two or three preferred subs,” explains Todd. “We like to use a regular cast of subcontractors to achieve end products.” Amsdell Companies has built lasting relationships with many of these contractors, who have proven to be a reliable and loyal source of quality work over the years.

The family business has built a reputation over more than eight decades of service. Amsdell Companies has been responsible for millions of dollars in real estate, continuously building an impressive portfolio and even more impressive experience in the field. “We have some of the most extensive experience in property acquisition, construction and management,” says Todd. His team is consistently striving to provide the highest quality real estate and service in the market.

Todd and the team at Amsdell Companies are looking toward a future of steady growth. “The economy is continuing to slowly improve,” he explains. “But we’re staying guarded.” There are no great leaps planned for Amsdell Companies any time soon, but Todd says he is continuously expanding the geographic footprint of the storage division. “We have a strategic plan to break into some new markets,” Todd elaborates.

Todd’s cautious optimism is leaving room for growth without overextending the company’s capabilities. Amsdell Companies’ storage centers, business parks and other ventures are steady and, like many businesses in the market, Todd and the team are not taking any unnecessary risks. Amsdell Companies continues to prioritize quality services and facilities while pressing on into a stable future.