Home Our Brands Catalog Quick Order Shopping List Kitchen Design & Build Customer Service My Account Login / Register
« Go Back  |  Home » All About RW Smith » About Us / History

About Us / History

Email This Page Print This Page Make PDF
About Us
About R.W. Smith & Co.
Established in 1935, R.W. Smith & Co. has grown from small restaurant supplier to recognized leader in today's commercial foodservice industry. We are a top ten U.S. dealer with a team of "Tabletop Experts" schooled in the art of tabletop solutions and foodservice projects. As an employee-owned company, we strive to build successful customer partnerships and ensure client satisfaction.

RW Smith San Diego
Rube Smith, Founder
Our History
In 1935, long-time entrepreneur Rube "Bob" Smith noticed a severe lack of originality among local restaurants. With no established foodservice industry or restaurant product supply companies around, restaurants were stuck with the same cookie cutter look and feel. Bob imagined the individuality that foodservice distribution could provide these restaurants. So with a $500 start-up loan, a new concept and a vision, he set out to corner this niche industry by launching R.W. Smith & Co.- which simply began as a company that sold bar supplies and condiments.

Though in the midst of The Great Depression, Bob continued to supply local San Diego bars and restaurants throughout World War II. When son, Stan Smith, returned from military service, Bob handed him the keys while waving "Au revoir!" from the deck of a cruise liner. Bob and his wife headed out for a much deserved vacation, and soon thereafter, Stan assumed part ownership of the company.

RW Smith has grown from serving a small base of local customers to providing high-quality supplies to bars and restaurants in California, Arizona, Nevada, Texas, Louisiana and Florida. Our restaurant division and contract department have grown exponentially over the years, and they now reach customers around the world.
Our Milestones
R.W. Smith & Co. launches its Commercial Kitchen Design & Build division in 1975.
Stan Smith retires from RW Smith on June 30, 1997. He and minority shareholder, Ron Woodhill, sell 93% of their company stock interest to its employees.
Ron Woodhill retires in August 2002, making RW Smith the 100% employee owned and operated company it is recognized as today. Each employee is a part owner in the company, and as owners we all share in the responsibility for our growth and prosperity.
The company launches its Controlled Environmental Rooms Divisions in 1984.
RW Smith celebrates 75 years of outstanding service in the foodservice distribution industry in 2010.

In 2011, R.W. Smith Donated $10,000 to North County Serenity House
2011 - Dealer OF The Year
Our Awards and Recognitions
In 1989, R.W. Smith & Co. was awarded the prestigious "Dealer of the Year" award from FE&S Magazine.
In 2006, we were named "Top Achiever" in the industry by FE&S Magazine.
In 2011, we were recognized as "Dealer of the Year" for a second time.
Our Locations

SAN DIEGO (Corporate Offices)
8555 Miralani Drive
San Diego, CA 92126
(858) 530-1800

7594 Trade Street
San Diego, CA 92121

3186 Airway Ave #A
Costa Mesa, CA 92626
(714) 540-6633
2301 McDaniel Drive #200
Carrollton, TX 75006


Copyright © 2000-2014, R.W. Smith & Co. 8555 Miralani Drive, San Diego CA 92126 All rights reserved.
Images and content herein and on each individual page are the property of R.W. Smith & Co. and may not be reproduced without R.W. Smith & Co.'s written consent.
See our Legal Notice and Privacy Policy here.Sitemap