Discount Vials: The Story So Far

Mission Statement

As a family-owned and operated Service Disabled Veteran Owned Small Business (SDVOSB) in Madison, Wisconsin, Discount Vials is committed to providing our customers with exceptional customer service and the highest quality products at the lowest possible prices. For over 20 years, we have supplied a comprehensive selection of glass vials, bottles, test tubes and droppers.

How It All Started

While working as an electronics technician at the USPS, Rhett witnessed the pioneering of moving data across the Internet. He took this knowledge further after becoming interested in e-commerce and explored the logistics of buying and selling over the Internet. He set up an online store and began looking for a product to sell.

During an exploration of UW-Madison's SWAP (Surplus With A Purpose) warehouse, Rhett found four full pallet racks of laboratory glassware available at a large discount. Another trip to SWAP and Rhett had negotiated with the manager to purchase all the warehouse's remaining glass supply. He was officially in the glass business, originally dubbed Rat's Glass.

Where We Are Today

Rhett continued to work full-time at the post office as he grew his business and rebranded it as Discount Vials. Sales continued to grow and Rhett searched for a new supplier. He picked up the Thomas Registry and, starting at the letter 'A', began calling every glass supplier. When he reached Pennsylvania Glass Products Company, he found what he was searching for.

Discount Vials and Pennsylvania Glass developed a working relationship and in 2004, Discount Vials acquired PAG in its entirety. The business continued to grow and moved from Rhett's basement into a 3,000 square foot warehouse in 2010. His wife, Laura, and daughter, Kelly, joined the family business as sales grew. In February 2017, Discount Vials moved into a spacious 6,000 square foot warehouse with seven employees, each having his or her own workspace.

As Discount Vials continues to grow, we maintain our unique personal touch seen in the originality of our marketing, shipping and product selection. All members of our team take pride in having considerable attention to detail while keeping in mind that time is of the essence.

The Future of Discount Vials

Along with Nahlee, the 2021 Midwest Shipping Superstar, Zoe in customer service and Amanda, who creates content and works in the warehouse, have recently joined the Discount Vials team. As they learn the glass bottle business, they are excited to share their knowledge and experience with our customers through our blog and Facebook page.

Over the years we’ve met some amazing people with some of our current customers going back to the days of the basement. Our customers range from homeschooling parents and Girl Scout troops to NASA and the TSA. The loyalty of our incredible customers motivates us to keep delivering our very best. Do you have a story about Discount Vials? We would love to help you tell it.