Saving customers money, helping the environment and partnering with non-profit organizations
As owner of two successful Rapid Refill stores, Jack enjoys being part of the solution to control the high cost of printer cartridges and to eliminate the number of ink cartridges that end up in landfills. He also likes that the savings of recycling an everyday product is passed to his customers.Jack Plomgren understands the importance of providing quality products and customer service. As an adjunct professor in the Marketing Department at Old Dominion University, a lifelong entrepreneur, and current President of The Ghent Business Association, he also has owned and operated Rapid Refill in Norfolk’s Ghent area since 2006 and recently opened a second location in Great Neck Village Shopping Center in Virginia Beach.
“Our cartridges and toners offer a 20% to 50% savings,” Jack says, “and 85% of what we sell retail is produced in Ghent.”
Rapid Refill offers both local consumers and businesses an alternative to buying expensive manufacturer brands of inkjet and toner cartridges. They remanufacture the cartridges on site in their Norfolk location, which means they are able to reuse the most expensive part of the cartridge, the cartridge itself.
The remanufacturing of cartridges and toners is an intense, two-day process, in which trained technicians inspect, clean, flush and fill cartridges under a vacuum with inks unique to that particular cartridge, then test on actual printers. Only after the completion of this extensive process is the cartridge ready for resale.
Every cartridge that is purchased at Rapid Refill comes with their Quality Commitment and provides a replacement and free installation if a problem is detected. Additionally, if a replacement is needed, it is typically delivered within two hours of notification.
“We offer a very unique service and product, and we go that extra step to ensure our product meets and exceeds all expectations,” Jack says. “We have extremely high customer satisfaction goals.”
“They have been involved and give back to the community
through non-profit organizations, and they are customer-service focused.
I only buy my ink and office toner through them and support
them one hundred percent.”
— MaryAnn Dement
Since opening its doors, Rapid Refill has become a staple of the Ghent community, and the Ghent store has grown every year for the last seven years.
“The staff has been with me for many years, some from the beginning, and they understand what this business is about, and they know how to help and solve problems,” Jack says. “It’s all about great customer service that both our consumers and businesses have come to expect.”
John Vellines, a loyal customer of Rapid Refill, agrees. As an Associate Broker and Realtor® with Nancy Chandler Associates, John has been returning empty cartridges and purchasing remanufactured ones at the Ghent location since it first opened in 2006.
“They are always nice and helpful. If I ever have even a small concern, they take care of it with no questions asked,” John says. “They are consistent in providing quality and value, and as a busy professional, I can certainly appreciate that level of customer service.”
Jack says it’s because of his loyal customers that he decided to purchase an existing Virginia Beach territory and open his second location.
“I knew expanding and opening a second location in Virginia Beach was the next step for Rapid Refill,” he explains. “We have always served our Virginia Beach business community through our delivery service, but now, with a retail storefront, we can serve both the consumers and businesses. We are pleased to be in the Great Neck area of Virginia Beach.”
Jack is quick to point out that Rapid Refill will continue to offer their free delivery to businesses throughout Hampton Roads.
“We aren’t altering our business delivery model and don’t have any plans to do so in the future. If a company calls in the morning, we will deliver the order in the afternoon, and if a company calls in the afternoon, we will deliver the order the next day,” he says. “Nothing has changed for our Virginia Beach business clients.”
MaryAnn Dement is another long-standing customer and has often utilized Rapid Refill’s free business delivery. She’s excited that there is a Rapid Refill that she’ll drive past on her way to work.
“I am very fond of doing business with a company that recycles. It may seem small, but if you consider how much ink one office uses in just one day, we really go through an enormous amount of ink and cartridges,” she says. “I have been diligent in collecting my used cartridges. Now, with a Virginia Beach location, I can drop them off more frequently.”
For those who can’t make it to one of the stores, empty cartridges can be dropped off at one of Rapid Refill’s collection partners, CHKD Thrift Stores, Norfolk and Portsmouth Public Libraries, The Zoo, and the SPCA among them.
“Through our collection programs, we have paid over $38,000 to these local non-profit organizations in the last five years and kept thousands of pounds of plastic out of our landfills,” Jack says. “This has been a win-win partnership for everyone.”
“Rapid Refill is a wonderful, independent and locally operated business that offers a needed product at a reduced cost,” MaryAnn says. “They have been involved and give back to the community through non-profit organizations, and they are customer-service focused. I only buy my ink and office toner through them and support them one hundred percent.”
1611 Colley Avenue
Norfolk, VA 23517
1348 North Great Neck Road
Virginia Beach, VA 23454
(written for The Shopper March 2013)
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