Mertes, Lee Resign from National RV
RV industry veterans Wayne Mertes and Bob Lee have resigned from their executive positions at National RV Holdings Inc., although they will continue as consultants to the company.
The resignations of Lee, the president and COO of National RV Holdings, and Mertes, CEO of the National RV subsidiary, were among several management changes announced today (Sept. 27) at the Perris, Calif.-based company.
The other changes include the following:
The company’s largest shareholder, Gary N. Siegler, resigned as chairman and CEO “to pursue other business opportunities.” (As a result of recent stock purchases, Siegler owns around 10% of National RV Holdings’ stock, including options. Mertes owns 7.1% and Lee owns 5%.)
Outside director Doy B. Henley was appointed chairman of National RV Holdings.
Brad Albrechtsen, 38, until recently the CFO, was appointed CEO of the holding company and to the board of directors.
According to Henley, Albrechtsen’s “immediate focus is on streamlining the company’s operations to bring its cost structure in line with current revenue levels.”
Mertes, 64, co-founded National RV Holdings’ predecessor, Dolphin Trailer Co., in 1964, while Lee, 62, founded Country Coach Inc. in 1974. Lee joined National RV Holdings after it acquired Country Coach in 1996.
Both Mertes and Lee decided to retire now because this is “a time of transition” at National RV Holdings, Albrechtsen said. Another key factor was that Mertes and Lee believe they have completed grooming their successors, Mike Jacque at the National RV subsidiary and Don Fults at Country Coach, Albrechtsen added.
Siegler, 39, executive officer of New York-based investment management firm SC Fundamental LLC, was the chairman of National RV Holdings from 1989 until now. He decided to leave his executive positions because the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11 pushed the RV industry’s turnaround further into the future, Albrechtsen said. And, as a New York City resident who did not want to re-locate to Southern California, Siegler did not feel he could contribute much in the current business environment.
Henley, 71, is a Southern California resident and CEO of Bruce Properties, a private real estate management company. Henley also was the founder and, from 1966 to 1997, chairman and CEO of Aeromil Engineering Co., a computer-automated manufacturing firm engaged in the production of complex machined titanium track systems and structural components for the aerospace industry.