Published On: Wed, Jan 18th, 2017

Prime Distributors marks 40th anniversary

Danny RamchandaniGreat Bay – Prime Distributors is celebrating forty years of service to the island of St. Maarten. The wholesaler located in Cole Bay is the result of hard work and determination on the part of its owner Danny Ramchandani.

Ramchandani has faced many obstacles over the decades in his rise to becoming the biggest wholesaler in St. Maarten. Hurricane Luis during the nineties and a financially devastating fire in the early two thousands were notable setbacks but certainly not deterrents.

Dorine Racherds 1According to Dorine Racherds, Ramchandani’s longtime personal secretary, “After the fire we came in and worked from the containers. Rain and water, we did what we had to do to get back on track.” Racherds marvels at the way Ramchandani held his own and maintained a calm demeanor through it all.

The result today is a company that represents twenty seven major international brands and supplies mostly all local grocery stores and restaurants on both the Dutch and French sides of the island with products both wholesale and retail.

Prime has changed its approach over the years and has two warehouses serving different clientele needs. The larger building located to the back provides wholesale and delivery to local businesses while the building to the front is continuing its transition to a food club which will serve large families who want to buy in bulk.

Being around for forty years Prime has employed many persons over the years and continues to do so for 153 persons with quite a few long time employees. One in particular, Lisle Levons, a delivery supervisor has been employed since the opening of Prime in August of 1977. He is joined by three other employees, Lucian Gumbs, Lionel Vrutaal and Dorine Racherds with over thirty plus years each.

Building on the success of Prime Distributors Ramchandani re-entered into the supermarket business after the demise of Ram’s in 1995. He opened up the Le Grand Marché chain of supermarkets and with its customer loyalty program offers locals a wonderful shopping experience.

Photo top captionDanny Ramchandani speaks at the 40th anniversary of his company. Photo contributed

Photo above caption: Ramchandani’s personal secretary, Dorine Racherds. Photo Today / Milton Pieters