Valley Towing Products’ management team has purchased the company from former parent company Thule, a Swedish company primarily known for making bike racks and carriers. The purchasing entity is named GRLC LLC and will continue its marketing efforts under the name Valley Towing Products, according to a news release.
Valley has a manufacturing and distribution center in Lodi, Calif., and operates additional distribution centers in Grove City, Ohio, Dallas, Texas, and Tifton, Ga.
The company has been producing a complete line of professional quality trailer hitches and towing equipment for over 59 years. Valley carries over 400 different receiver style hitches along with fifth-wheel and gooseneck hitches, luggage racks, cargo carriers, bike racks and a full assortment of towing accessories including trailer balls, ball mounts, hitch pins and locks.
The primary investors include George Caplea, CEO and president; Richard Marsden, CFO; Larry Fisher, vice president of sales and marketing; Chris Fudala, vice president of engineering; and Brian Rishell, vice president of global sourcing and purchasing. A purchase price was not disclosed.
The acquisition provides a platform for the company to move forward in its quest to increase share in the towing aftermarket, according to Valley’s management team.
“Having ‘trailer hitch people’ owning a trailer hitch business is a very good thing,” said Fisher, adding “At Valley, the ownership and management team is now comprised of people with vast experience in the towing aftermarket doing what they have been trained best to do: building and selling trailer hitches and towing accessories.”
According to Valley’s management team, the company’s growth plans revolve around joining forces with the best possible customer partners. “Valley has no desire to act as a distributor or compete with customers as other manufacturers have done,” the company said in a statement.