Leaders Council Spotlight: Duncan Gillis, BBB Industries

DAPHNE, Ala. - Duncan Gillis is the CEO of BBB Industries, an industry leader in remanufacturing of starters, alternators, brake calipers, power steering products and turbochargers for the North American vehicle aftermarket.

BBB Industries, is one of the Alabama Gulf Coast’s best-kept secrets. The Daphne-based company was founded in 1987 by a local father and his two sons. Today, it has grown to employ more than 10,500 people in North America and supplies almost 20 million parts annually, that fit more than 95% of the vehicles on the road today. Its products are stocked in more than 22,000 stores across North America. 

BBB is an automotive part remanufacturer. That means they restore parts to "good as new” condition. The company says remanufacturing is one of the world’s greenest and most sustainable industries because it operates on a circular economy; minimizing waste, reducing energy consumption, conserving landfill space and saving non-renewable raw materials. Remanufacturing also makes products more widely available at lower prices.

CEO Duncan Gillis took on leadership at BBB two years ago. In that time, the company has grown more than 50%, primarily through market share gains and bolt-on acquisitions. 

In August 2018, the company was sold to a consortium of company executives and San Francisco-based Genstar Capital, an investment firm focused on providing capital for fast-growing middle market companies.

Gillis has served on various for profit and not for profit boards over his career, with his most recent experience at the National Association of Manufacturers, one of the most important advocates for small, medium and large US manufacturing companies. 

Locally, he represents BBB on the Eastern Shore Chamber's Leaders Council.  The company is also involved with the Prodisee Pantry, Habitat for Humanity, and the LifeSouth Community Blood Center. They also assemble a team each year for the Fuse Project’s Dragon Boat Race.

"I have always believed that our family should contribute to the communities in which we live.  For instance, when our children were younger, we lived in a foreign country. I coached basketball, and my wife, Morgen, ran the sports program for the expatriate children.  Over the years, both, she and I served on Boards of local non-profit organizations,” said Gillis.

Gillis was born and raised on the South Shore of Massachusetts and holds a BS and MBA from Cornell University.  After graduating from college, Gillis was commissioned into the United States Army and served as a Light Infantry Officer (Ranger qualified) attaining the final rank of Captain.

An instrument-rated private pilot, he currently resides in Point Clear with his wife of 32 years, Morgen, and dog, Darby.  The Gillis’ have two sons. 

"We love the Eastern Shore and, after living around the country and the world for most of our married lives, we have decided to settle down here,” said Gillis. "The welcoming community, accessible outdoor activities, warm climate, abundant natural beauty, and the hospitality have hooked us!”

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