NORTH LIMA, Ohio – A 62,000-square-foot building where commercial doors and then Zim’s Crack Cream were once made will soon house thousands of building supply materials ready to be auctioned.
Exactly how soon, Tom Paranzino can’t say.
“It’s going to take me months to get into the new building,” says the owner of Paranzino Enterprises LLC, which paid $1 million to acquire the light manufacturing, warehouse and office building at 131 W. South Range Road.
Paranzino owns Paranzino Brothers Auctioneers at 11505 South Ave. in North Lima. He also owns Bernard-Daniels Lumber Co. in Canfield, which he acquired in 2005.
His $1 million purchase of the building on South Range Road closed Oct. 4, public records show.
“The goal is to move our once-a-month building materials auction under one roof into this larger facility,” he says.
Paranzino Auctioneers, founded in 1999, draws buyers from across the country. Today it is the largest building supply auction company in the country, according to Paranzino.
But in March 2020, sales came to an abrupt stop. “COVID put us out of business essentially,” he says. “We had to go online.”
Ironically, Paranzino Auctioneers started doing online auctions in 2005 but discontinued them. “It didn’t catch on,” he says.
“By May 2020, we had a building full of stuff that we had to get rid of. So we went back online. And it caught on,” he says. “Now the online auction is three times larger than the live auction used to be in North Lima on the third Tuesday of the month.”
Still, with the number of live auctions sharply reduced, “gross volume is less. But we’ve figured out how to do business with 30% fewer employees,” he says.
“Given the shortage of workers, it’s a blessing that we don’t need more employees. And the ones we have, we cherish.”
Most of the building supply products Paranzino auctions consist of excess inventory from manufacturers. “Most name brands send anything they have to us. And we recently started taking in unclaimed freight,” he says.
The newly acquired building sits on five acres and has much more storage capacity than Paranzino’s site on South Avenue.
It was constructed in 1969 by Iron City Sash & Door and remodeled in 2006, according to public records. Mount West Investments LP took ownership in 2006 and leased it to Berlin Industries, which manufactured Zim’s Crack Cream. In 2016, Zim’s moved to its Japanese parent company’s U.S. headquarters in Georgia.
Another tenant then used the building for storage, says Jim Grantz, listing agent and broker for Edward J. Lewis & Co. in Youngstown.
“Most of the building is warehouse space,” says Grantz.
“It’s a great location, a nice suburban location, and it has all the amenities that Mr. Paranzino needed for his business going forward.”
Pictured at top: The building at 131 W. South Range Road was sold Monday for $1 million.