June '17

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54 • RV PRO • June 2017 rv-pro.com A F T E R M A R K E T saver covers. Covercraft also holds sev- eral licenses including Carhart and Ford. "As the company's specialties devel- oped over time, we went one way and they went another, and yet at the end of the day, our products are extremely similar and even in recent times, Cov- ercraft never distributed in the RV space and ADCO never distributed our products in the automotive space," Ein says. "The easiest way for the com- panies to expand in those markets was to merge together." There's kind of a funny story between the former neighbors. The two companies, Ein says, "used to be next to each other, then they (Cover- craft) moved to Oklahoma in 1993 while we stayed in Northridge. Our factory fell during the earthquake, which was dev- astating to us. We always laughed that Covercraft had some kind of advanced warning, because they got out of town." Under terms of the merger, ADCO acts as a division of Covercraft Indus- tries and remains based in Valencia, Calif., with offices in Elkhart, Ind., and Louisville, Ky. In addition to Ein, many ADCO team members have taken global roles inside Covercraft and other employees were absorbed by Covercraft. That includes ADCO's Erik Guldager as head of sales for the whole company, sup- ported by Beth Velarde, Western Region director of Covercraft sales. Better Together The merger, Ein says, will lead to additional products, better customer ser- vice, more inventory and less wait times for products for RV owners. There also were plenty of efficiencies, he says. "When you put together two compa- nies that are similar, it creates all sorts of economies of scale," Ein says. Processing, tech departments and accounting were among areas where that has taken place. "So far, accounting and the ERP sys- tems have been mostly integrated and we have reviewed most of the major processes throughout the organization and tried to optimize where possible," Ein says. "We have also developed cohesive marketing road maps using each other's resources." There also are the benefits that come with having a larger footprint. ADCO, a 28-employee operation, has become part of an operation with more than 700 employees. "We are able to use shared technol- ogies, and when it comes to fabric pur- chasing we are much larger, so prices come down," Ein says. This isn't just about reviewing the processes, either. Given that each com- pany has its own expertise and ways of doing things, the businesses found they were able to pass on better methods to each other, according to Ein. "We were able to teach each other things about the business," he says. "Sometimes you can't see the forest through the trees, and a fresh set of eyes sometimes helps you to do things better. Covercraft today is widely known for its automotive covers, but the company also makes seat covers, floor mats, dash covers, sunscreens and more. Among ADCO's many product offerings are Winnebago-branded covers.

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