Names and Numbers was brought to life in 1974 when Ken Brock purchased a small directory business based in Springfield, MO, with money from his savings account. Daring to dream, Mr. Brock moved the business into his living room located in the small southeastern Kansas town of Pittsburg and renamed it Names and Numbers. In the beginning, he alone organized all aspects of the five directories published, including sales, production, and distribution.
Names and Numbers continued to grow steadily over the next 10 years. In 1984, unexpectedly, the landmark antitrust court decision had a profound effect on Mr. Brock's business. The competitive environment was changed by the deregulation of the telecommunications industry. The judicial decision to break up the AT&T monopoly into the seven regional Baby Bells allowed Names and Numbers to focus on smaller communities rather than just produce one large directory that covered an entire telephone company area. It opened up the markets and allowed the business to customize for individual areas.
The vision was to make a more accurate, complete, and easy-to-use phone book for the areas it served, as well as build the advertisers' business by giving them a highly effective advertising campaign. Designed specifically for each individual area, Names and Numbers' phone books contain an abundance of information, including an Emergency page, Service Guide (providing area code/time zone map, toll free numbers, and state zip codes), Community information (providing calendar of events, local area maps, and local stadium seating charts), and the increasingly popular Caller I.D. Guide. Names and Numbers also produces an enhanced Internet Yellow Page product that allows advertisers even more opportunities to reach their customers. It is everything you need in a phone book and web site.
Over 35 years later, Names and Numbers has grown into a directory empire that employs over 250 people. In December 2005, the company established new phone books throughout the state of Texas, representing the company's desire for continued expansion. With this and other expansion plans, Names and Numbers currently reaches over four million homes in 62 markets located in 11 states.
Looking forward to the future, Ken Brock and the Names and Numbers team envision serving more customers nationwide for many years to come.