The family behind a local office supply company has set up a new business with the next generation in mind.
Melissa and Jonathan Ball, owners of Ball Office Products, bought longtime Richmond-based billiards and games company CP Dean Co. from William Selden V in a deal that closed on Wednesday.
The terms of the deal have not been disclosed.
The venture represents a major breakthrough for Sarah Ball, the Balls’ 22-year-old daughter and recent graduates William and Mary. Sarah will be in charge of day-to-day running as president. Melissa is the CEO of CP Dean.
CP Dean sells billiard tables, dartboards, foosball tables, other indoor games and related accessories. The company also sells custom trophies and awards.
Sarah said there are no major changes in the works for the company right now, but said she hopes looking ahead to boost the company’s digital business.
“Personally, I want to increase online sales and our social media presence,” she said. “Looking ahead, we have a lot of ideas that we can work with.”
While most of CP Dean’s business is located in Virginia, its market spans the mid-Atlantic, Ball said.
The company has 10 employees and they are expected to remain in service. Selden also remains an employee of the company and now oversees purchases and sales.
CP Dean has his showroom and warehouse at 2044 Westmoreland St. in Henrico County, adjacent to Ball Office Products at 2100 Westmoreland St.
Selden, who has run the company since 1971, said he wanted to transfer the business, and regular conversations with Jonathan one day led to the idea of a sale.
“Because we’re next door, we share a parking lot and see each other every day. Jonathan Ball is a boater and I’m a boater, so we always have something to talk about,” Selden said.
Selden said the deal came about when he agreed to stay on, freeing him from management duties to focus on purchasing and sales.
“That seemed best to me. I could have my cake and eat it too,” Selden said.
He said the awards side of the company, which sells plaques and trophies to sports teams and offices, came to a temporary standstill in March 2020 as the pandemic spread sports events and office workers. More recently, that revenue stream has picked up again.
The company’s games business had the opposite experience last year, making up for lost rewards revenue.
“Everyone who called wanted a game that they could put in the house because they had something to do or the kids had something to do,” he said. “The demand for it was the best we’ve had in 15 or 20 years and it has remained that way.”
The company declined to share sales figures. Selden said the company sold 240 pool tables last year and is on track to sell 250 to 275 tables this year.
CP Dean was founded in Richmond in 1886 by Charles Preston Dean. William Selden III bought the company in 1903. The company moved to its current location on Westmoreland Street about nine years ago.
CP Dean will operate separately from Ball Office Products, which Melissa and Jonathan founded in 2000. Ball Office Products acquired Smarter Interiors in 2018.