Marion, S.C., October 8, 2009 – In a move to strengthen its operations and performance, Road Rescue has received additional capital investment and leadership support from its parent company, Spartan Motors, Inc. (Nasdaq: SPAR).
As part of a strategic initiative announced six months ago, Spartan Motors has made capital investments in facilities and equipment to strengthen the Marion, S.C. manufacturer of premium ambulance and rescue vehicles. Spartan Motors is also investing in the development of new Road Rescue products that will be introduced in the coming quarters.
Enhancements at the Marion facility include:
· Construction of a new customer inspection facility that is climate controlled and is illuminated by high intensity lighting
· Addition of equipment that streamlines the engineering and manufacturing processes, reducing order-to-delivery time
· Lighting upgrades throughout the facility to improve the manufacturing environment while supporting energy conservation
· Focus on continuous improvement, with an emphasis on refining work flow, reducing inventory and increasing speed
David L. Reid, a vice president at Spartan Motors, will now lead the day-to-day operations of Road Rescue. Reid, who brings more than 30 years of leadership experience to this role, will have profit/loss responsibility for Road Rescue, as well as its sister company, fire apparatus manufacturer Crimson Fire, Inc.
Prior to joining SMI, Reid spent more than 20 years with publicly traded global furniture maker Herman Miller, Inc. While at Herman Miller, he served as senior vice president and general manager of Milcare, Inc., a subsidiary of Herman Miller specializing in healthcare furniture and equipment. He successfully returned Milcare to profitability by developing and expanding the dealer distribution network, establishing a strong government sales unit, expanding into international markets and making operational improvements.
“Road Rescue builds the best, safest and strongest ambulances in the industry, and Spartan Motors remains deeply committed its success,” said Tom Gorman, chief operating officer of SMI. “Dave Reid has been a recognized and effective change agent since joining us in 2007. He and his team have the full support – and resources – of SMI to supplement the talent in Marion.
“Our team is focused on accelerating the progress at Road Rescue by sharing best practices from all the Spartan Motors family of companies with South Carolina to maximize the value we deliver to shareholders, dealers and end users. We are committed to having the right people in place to make this business successful in Marion.”
The announcement comes at the conclusion of a successful dealer meeting in Marion. More than 40 participants from 16 leading dealers spent two days at the facility reviewing new products and programs being developed for 2010 introductions. Dealers like Bob Reilly of North Eastern Rescue have already begun to see the changes.
“North Eastern Rescue is proud to partner with Road Rescue and SMI,” said Reilly, partner in North Eastern. “In these uncertain times the financial backing and support of SMI for Road Rescue is comforting. It has allowed the people at Road Rescue to continue to focus on the quality and innovation that has made them a market leader.”
Reid looks forward to working with Reilly and other Road Rescue dealers, as well as the team in Marion, end users and other key stakeholder groups.