Catching some heat? In the wake of the recent RZR recall, Polaris Industries named Senior Engineering Director Joel Houlton VP of global safety and quality. Houlton reports to CEO/Chairman Scott Wine and Ken Pucel, EVP of operations, engineering and lean. “The safety and quality of our products must be our number-one priority as a company,” said Wine. “Joel and his team will have one simple mandate: do whatever it takes to make Polaris the leader we should be, and that our customers and dealers expect us to be, with respect to safety and quality.” Houlton joined the company in 2011, most recently serving in central engineering operations and defense engineering.
Russian sidecar motorcycle manufacturer IMZ-Ural is investing in its dealer network and marketing programs, naming Josh Kane U.S. director of sales and dealer services, and hiring Hayter Communications as its PR agency. Kane is charged with expanding Ural’s dealer base nationwide and ensuring current dealers are provided with the latest tools for selling the unique Ural design. He was most recently Pacific Northwest regional sales manager and technical services manager for Piaggio Group Americas. As head of Ural sales and dealer services, Kane plans to build a top-tier customer service program and establish new dealers in key markets. Seattle-based Hayter will handle all trade, dealer and consumer editorial outreach.
Cardo Systems, Inc. has announced the addition of industry veteran Kevin Nixon to its team. Nixon will serve as Cardo’s marketing director for North America from his home base in Southern California and interface with all segments in the industry, including media and sales channels. Kevin is an avid rider and vintage-racing enthusiast who joins the team after 14 years with powersports brands such as AIMExpo, Twisted Throttle and Vanson Leathers. “With his well-rounded marketing experience and impressive knowledge of the motorcycle industry, Kevin will make a very valuable addition to our team,” said Abraham Glezerman, Cardo’s founder and CEO. “By bringing Kevin on board, we reiterate our commitment to keep strengthening Cardo’s lead position as the market’s premium brand in motorcycle communications.”
MTA Distributing’s former West Coast Rep Tim Richards has joined protection pros at EVS Sports. In this new role, Tim will provide sales and marketing support to EVS dealers in California. “We are thrilled to have Tim joining the EVS Team,” says Todd Lentz, director of global sales and marketing. “His skillset in combination with his familiarity with the EVS product line is invaluable. Tim gives us an active presence for our dealers in California, an area that is so crucial in the moto industry.” He will work as an EVS advocate for consumers, dealers, distributor reps and the industry as a whole. Prior to MTA, Tim spent more than 10 years as the parts manager for Prime Performance Motorsports.
S&S Cycle of Viola, Wisconsin, welcomes Savannah Rose in the newly expanded position of social media coordinator. S&S VP David Zemla describes Savannah as, “a market-savvy media authority who understands the social as well as the marketing aspects and is versed in leveraging both. “We look forward to her unique take on consumer facing media.” In addition to being well versed in digital media channels, she has experience in next gen style events, including Born Free, Chopperfest and others.
Former Arctic Cat exec John Tranby has signed on with CFMOTO as director of marketing. “We are very pleased that John has joined our growing team,” says CFO Eric Fan. “With John’s passion for the category and deep knowledge of the marketing toolbox available today, I am confident we can move our brand forward in the U.S. Our main goal is the support and growth of our dealer network, and John’s strategic vision is going to go a long way in helping us achieve that.” Tranby adds, “It’s well known in the industry that CFMOTO has exciting, great quality products and an unmatched price-value equation. With the addition of a few new product segments coming in the 2017 model year, CFMOTO is going to be a serious player in the U.S. market and that will be fun to be part of.”
Sean Laughlin is the new VP of marketing for the MAG Retail Group (MRG) that runs J&P Cycles and Motorcycle Superstore. “Sean is the unique blend of marketing experience coupled with his own motorcycle lifestyle experience,” said MRG president Kevin Strawbridge. “He has the passion to carry the current MRG brands forward as continued leaders in parts, gear and accessories for our customers as well as the ability to create new opportunities for the brands.” A veteran of the motorcycle industry and marketer of some of the most valued brands in the world, including Harley-Davidson, McDonald’s, General Motors and Trek Bicycles, Laughlin will oversee brand, creative digital and traditional marketing efforts for J&P and Motorcycle Superstore.