It was the spring of 1973 when the Hansons, originally from Ronan, MT, moved to Missoula and opened Axmen. Bud Hanson had always dreamed of doing business "his own way", so he sold his hardware store, teamed up with his two sons and bought a piece of Missoula. Bud’s approach to business has continued through the third generation and Axmen is even more unusual today than it was in 1973. Bud's idea about business: Don’t sell the customer something he doesn’t need. If it isn’t the right thing to meet his needs, tell him where to get what he needs. If you truly care for your customers’ best interests, the money will follow. Your customers are your biggest assets. Axmen has a picture of Bud in the entryway that helps us remember his ideas. You’ll also see a picture of the original crew from the eighties. Times have changed radically but some things remain the same. We started selling wood stoves during the first Arab oil embargo and we now sell, install and service wood, gas, pellet, and oil stoves along with Caldera and FreeFlow Spas within a 100-mile radius of Missoula. Grant Hanson has taken our pump department to new levels over the last ten years with the addition of firefighting equipment of every type and description. Axmen slide-in fire pumpers are now a common sight at wild-land fires throughout the Northwest. Grant still manages to find time to help people plan their dreams of off-grid backwoods power systems. In 2000 we were blessed in forming Axmen Propane. Our growth has been exciting and our customers’ responses thrilling. Axmen Propane gives us the chance to handle all the parts of our customers’ heating in one package within the same 100 mile circle. In 2010 we were lucky enough to be able to open the gates to Axmen Recycling. The response from our community has been incredible. We are proud to be able to help offer our customers solutions that are good for the environment and the community. As Missoula has grown and new businesses have entered the marketplace, we have learned to be grateful for the opportunity they bring to us all. Montana has been good to the Axmen and we try every day to be worthy of the trust that our customers place in us and to find new and better ways to meet their needs.
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