Anchoring the general session during Stag Parkway Inc.’s Jan. 15-17 “Driving Success” dealer meeting, President and CEO Martin Street revealed details concerning the Atlanta-based company’s sale to a private equity firm last December while purporting the collective benefits for its dealer partners.
Addressing around 1,100 dealer personnel at the Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center in San Antonio, Texas – representing a record turnout – Street highlighted the strengths of its new parent, Linsalata Capital. Stag also reported that 150 exhibitors were on hand for the meeting, displaying product on the expansive show floor.
“As I’m sure you have all seen, in December last year we were acquired by Linsalata Capital – a private equity company – from our previous owners Ares Capital,” said Street, who joined the distributor five years ago. “Lin-Cap, as it is known, is a company that specializes in owning logistics and distribution companies and so I am looking forward to the help that they can provide us, to continue with our growth plans, and to advise us on best practices that we will be able to incorporate into our current business model.”
Street acknowledged the takeover was a protracted and involved process, noting tongue-in-cheek, “At one time or another during last year I think we heard rumors that just about everyone in this room was buying us.”
He added, “Bottom line is Lin-Cap accepted that the RV industry was a great industry to be in because it has potential for growth. And they bought Stag because they believe that we can grow beyond where we currently are. They believed we are financially sound and have the infrastructure to grow. They believe, because we talked to them about our competition and they independently confirmed our views, that we are stronger than the competition and have better marketing plans for the future.”
Street also spoke to Stag’s recent expansion into the Canadian aftermarket with the opening of a warehouse facility in Brampton, Ontario, a suburb of Toronto.
“We have more than 7,000 items available there, two dedicated salespeople serving that market and plans to bring the entire portfolio of STAG services to Canada in the coming year,” he related. “…Expanding our market presence to the north is a natural extension of our growth plans. We very much look forward to working more closely with our customers there and believe our service levels, marketing and merchandising programs will be a welcome addition to the services they currently have access to.”
During the general session, Stag announced that long-time executive Craig Mellor would be stepping down from his responsibilities as senior vice president of sales to assume the role of senior sales advisor. Bob Barra, who previously served as regional sales manager and Eastern divisional vice president of sales, was introduced as Mellor’s successor.
“I’m delighted that we are able to promote from within to replace Craig and take someone who has developed and grown with Stag for many years and allow him the scope to help to continue to drive our business forward,” said Street.
As part of the gathering, Stag also recognized its key business partners with the traditional Peach Award. Recipients included Stromberg Carlson Products Inc., Winegard Co., RV Designer Collection, Progress Manufacturing Inc., SHURflo and Carmanah Industries.