The recreational vehicle industry, which used to virtually define Inland Southern California’s manufacturing sector, is not gone and certainly not forgotten. And, probably nowhere is this more certain than in the heart, mind and hands of Pablo Carmona.
The Press Enterprise, Riverside, reported that Carmona is an RV lifer who never left the game. Two months ago he launched Talvor USA and began manufacturing towable trailers for export to Australia, working from a factory in Perris that used to be occupied by one of many companies in the region that did not survive the recession.
But Carmona’s story is longer than that. He came to the United States from Mexico as young man, with no American schooling and limited English skills and, when in his 20s, got a job on the production floor of Thor of California’s factory in Moreno Valley, one of the many operations that made the Inland area the nation’s biggest RV-making hub west of the Mississippi River.
Within a short period, he was a supervisor at Thor, but his journey to the helm of his own company began to get serious in 2009. Carmona teamed with a pair of other Thor alumni, Brad Williams and Roger Humeston, with what started as MVP EV, an effort to manufacture electric vehicles.
That fell through because of lack of funding but evolved into MVP RV. The company began to produce and sell trailers from a former Fleetwood Enterprises Inc. factory in Riverside but the company disappeared late in 2011. MVP’s chief investor, Chinese entrepreneur Winston Chung, lost the firm in a dispute with a co-investor, a firm called Fadar International.
The last vestiges of MVP RV were sold off in April 2012 to a Los Angeles-based real estate investor with no experience or intent involving the RV industry.
That left Carmona, who is now 44, with no job — but not without options. As MVP RV’s vice president for manufacturing, he had a reputation as a seasoned professional and received some job offers that would have meant leaving the area.
Talvor started in Perris, in a plant that used to be the home for RV manufacturer Weekend Warrior, in November. At the outset there were six employees. There are currently 32 people working there, and he plans to add five or six new workers a week.
The company is turning our two or three finished RVs a week and hopes to up that to up that to between 40 and 50 a month when the plant gets to full staff.
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A new recreation vehicle manufacturing company, TALVOR USA, has recently been launched by industry veteran Pablo Carmona, previously COO and president of manufacturing for former MVP RV Inc. of Riverside, Calif.
TALVOR USA is an extension of manufacturing company TALVOR Australia and New Zealand and brings together industry experts from the U.S. and Australia. Since its founding in 1985, TALVOR Australia and New Zealand has invested heavily in research and development, spatial design technology, sourcing components and quality control, according to a news release.
With Carmona at the helm as president and CEO, the new company will manufacture travel trailers, toy haulers, fifth-wheels and Class B vans at its Perris, Calif., facility. These vehicles will primarily be sold in the United States, however TALVOR USA will also be exploring export opportunities to Australia, Korea and China.
The rugged, yet attractive vehicles incorporate contemporary styling and design features that set them apart from the competition, and are backed by the reputation of a well-respected international brand that has more than 25 years of experience in meeting the needs of travelers.
Company investor Luke Trouchet, CEO of Australian-owned campervan and caravan manufacturer TALVOR, is confident that the new enterprise will be a successful one because the American team has the expertise and experience to meet and exceed the expectations of the RV market.
“Beyond the wheels and chassis, TALVOR USA vehicles are based on an understanding of what the modern traveler desires,” said Carmona. “Our customers want a place to get away while going to amazing places. We believe that to own a TALVOR USA recreational vehicle will be to own endless possibilities.”
Also joining the TALVOR USA team are General Manager Michelle Treangen, a 30-year RV industry veteran, and Sales Manager-Controller Steve Hauser, who has more than 23 years of RV industry experience. Both formerly worked for Fleetwood. Prior to his experience with MVP, Carmona held senior management positions with Thor California, Pacific Coachworks and Modtech.
For more information please visit the website www.talvor.com/us, or email Pablo Carmona at email@example.com. TALVOR USA is located at 1320 W. Oleander Avenue, Perris, California 92571.
The 4.8-acre facility will begin operating on Dec. 10.