UFC Legend Randy Couture will have the support of The Western RV Group of Companies behind him on Saturday (April 30) when he takes on Lyoto Machida at the most anticipated MMA event of the year, UFC 129.
“We’re very excited to partner with the legend, and multiple UFC Champion, Randy Couture. He is an example of true class in MMA fighting and combat sports,” said Bruce Urban, owner of Western RV Country, based in Airdrie, Alberta.
Randy Couture will sport the Western RV Country logo on his fight shorts in what could be the last official MMA fight of his legendary career in front of a sold out crowd of 55,000 fans at the Rogers Center in Toronto.
Couture and Urban have a long-standing relationship and earlier this month Western RV, along with the Edmonton Rush Lacrosse Club, unveiled the first ever UFC-themed Monster Truck “Extreme Couture.”
“The Extreme Couture Monster Truck is probably the coolest Monster Truck in the world and will be a huge fan favorite everywhere it goes. This truck is synonymous of Randy, it’s the ultimate combination of tough and cool,” Urban said.
The truck will be on display at high profile events all throughout North America. The Capital Ex Monster Truck Show will be taking over Rexall Place July 27-29 and will mark the official unveiling of the Extreme Couture Truck. The three-day, five-show event is expected to draw over 35,000 spectators.
Western RV Country of Canada’s commitment to quality and company philosophy of putting their customers first has made Western RV Country one of the largest RV dealers in Alberta. Western RV Country has won the consumer choice award for nine years in a row. Western RV strives to create a low-pressure, family-geared environment for their customers.
Undeterred by a recession that has battered the RV industry and its presence in the Southern California’s Inland region, a multimillion-dollar Canadian RV dealer is opening its first U.S. dealership in Riverside to be closer to a travel trailer manufacturer that the owner considers his “hidden secret,” according to the Riverside Press-Enterprise.
The dealership, American All-Star RV at 7207 Indiana Ave. off Highway 91 near Madison Street, will soon be filled with Riverside-based Pacific Coachworks’ line of Tango travel trailers, said Bruce Urban, owner and president of Western RV Country group of companies in Alberta.
Pacific Coachworks trailers, built at a factory in Riverside, have been one of Urban’s biggest sellers in Canada, he said, citing the company’s attention to detail and use of plywood inside the trailers instead of particle board.
And if the trailers can stand up to the Canadian wilderness, “they’ll definitely stand up in California,” Urban said.
When Dane Found and Tom Powell — founders of Thor California in Moreno Valley — started Pacific Coachworks in 2006, Urban was one of their first customers, and he remains the company’s largest dealer “by a long shot,” Found said.
At Thor, Found and Powell began selling Urban their recreational vehicles in 1996.
Urban may not be selling arcade games, but he has them in his dealerships anyway to entertain the children of would-be trailer buyers who may visit the red, white and blue sports-themed dealership once it’s finished. That’s why there’s sometimes a monster truck sitting outside, and perhaps a mini-golf course too.
“Atmosphere can sell,” he said.
For the adults, he plans weekly tours to see Pacific Coachworks trailers being made inside the Riverside factory nearby.
“There aren’t many dealers who have their manufacturing facility 15 minutes away,” Urban said. “When I knew we’d be that close and be able to give weekly tours, I thought this would really, really help people see what they’re buying.”
Urban got his start selling used cars in his mom’s driveway before expanding his dealership to a one-acre gravel lot in 1992, he said.
Today, he has six storefronts and sales of $130 million, he said. The Riverside store will be his seventh.
He thought about opening a dealership in the United States about a year ago, but “the market really cratered down there,” he said.
But he didn’t want to wait for another dealership to seize the chance to sell Pacific Coachworks trailers to the degree he wants to in Southern California.
“I wanted to have that product in that market,” he said. “History shows it’s a great RV market.”
The site of his new Riverside dealership has an RV past, having been home to Country Time R.V. Center and later Richardson’s RV, which has a few Inland locations.
An RV dealer industry group points to Census data that there were 3,129 RV sales locations nationwide in 2007, and about 160 have closed since January.
Dan Merkowsky, executive vice president of the RV Dealers Association of Alberta, called Urban, a member of the group, one of the smartest marketers he knows.
The number of RVs sold in Canada had fallen by about 50% to 50,000 vehicles this year because of the global recession, he said.
Urban said his sales have suffered a 15% decline this year.
He said he’s confident, however, that the travel trailer market will continue to fare better than sales of other RVs, such as Class A motorhomes, since they generally don’t cost as much.
“It’s not cool for grandpa to show up in a $200,000 motorhome when other people are struggling (financially),” he said. “The days of bigger-are-better is behind us.”