Industry Update


News from around the Green industry

Eastman Industries Acquires California Trimmer

Eastman Industries has purchased California Trimmer, Inc. California Trimmer, based in Fresno, Calif., has been manufacturing powered reel mowers for commercial and residential applications since 1935. Eastman, which manufactures hovering lawn mowers and commercial walk-behind push mowers, is moving Trimmer’s inventory and equipment to its manufacturing facility in Portland, Maine.

Shindaiwa and Swisher Enter Agreement

Shindaiwa, Inc. and Swisher, Inc. have entered into a private label agreement. Under the terms of the agreement, Shindaiwa, based in Tualatin, Ore., will manufacture outdoor power equipment for Swisher, a family-owned, privately held corporation with manufacturing facilities in Warrensburg, Mo., and Lawrenceburg, Tenn. Initially, the new line of Swisher-branded products will include 11 models of commercial-grade hand-held equipment, including brush cutters, grass trimmers, lawn edgers and leaf blowers. Each model will be equipped with a powerful, eco-friendly, four-stroke engine.

Inaugural GIE+EXPO Successful

More than 21,000 people participated in the first-ever Green Industry & Equipment Expo in Louisville, Ky., October 25-27. GIE+EXPO is the result of a merger between the International Lawn, Garden & Power Equipment Expo and the Green Industry Expo. It was sponsored by the Outdoor Power Equipment Institute, the Professional Landcare Network and the Professional Grounds Management Society.

The new show hosted 643 exhibiting companies from all over the world. There were about 7,000 dealers/retailers and approximately 7,000 lawn and landscape pros at the show. Participants represented all 50 states and 50 countries. About 2,400 people participated in the Green Industry Conference, which was sponsored by PLANET, and the School of Grounds Management, sponsored by PGMS.  

Cipriano Switches to Water-Based Sealants

Beginning this fall, New Jersey-based Cipriano Landscape Design will finish its stone patios and outdoor kitchens exclusively with water-based sealants, which are less toxic than traditional sealants and safe for all surfaces.

Stone-sealing solvents expel volatile organic compounds (VOCs), which deteriorate indoor and outdoor air quality and can also contaminate public water supplies. New Jersey, New York, Maryland, Pennsylvania and Delaware currently have VOC regulations in place.

Cipriano also practices conservation by cutting its fuel consumption and incorporating soil conservation techniques into its projects.

BASF Appoints Director of Specialty Products Division

BASF Agricultural Products has appointed Paul Rea director of its Specialty Products Division.

Rea has been with BASF for more than six years and his most recent assignment was director of regional marketing for North America. Prior to that, he was involved in the company’s divestiture of the Microflo business and global marketing efforts for BASF’s line of herbicides. Before supporting BASF in North America, Rea was national sales manager for BASF Australia, Ltd. Prior to BASF, he worked within the retail distribution network and spent more than 10 years with a major seed company in both Australia and New Zealand.

Scag Donates to Disabled American Veterans

Scag Power Equipment recently presented the Disabled American Veterans (DAV) with a donation check for $130,000. Scag, in cooperation with its distributors and dealers, has committed to contribute $50 to DAV for each Scag Freedom Z mower retailed and registered through 2007. The donation presented represents Freedom Z mowers sold and registered through mid-September. The remaining 2007 donation will be made in early 2008.

DAV, a 1.3-million-member nonprofit organization, was founded in 1920 and chartered by the U.S. Congress in 1932. Scag, a division of Metalcraft of Mayville, Inc., manufactures commercial mowing equipment.

From left: Venture Products President Dallas Steiner and Bob Lawrence, owner of Bob Lawrence Power Equipment.

Ventrac by Venture Names Award Winners

Venture Products, Inc. has announced the recipients of the company’s 2007 Dealer Awards.

This year’s winner of the Marvin Steiner Award is Bob Lawrence of Bob Lawrence Power Equipment in Asheville, N.C. Other 2007 Dealer Award winners: Growth Award, Charlottesville Power Equipment, Charlottesville, Va., and Brace Power Equipment, Carrollton, Ohio; Total Sales Award, North Carolina Turf Equipment, Wilmington, N.C., and O’Neils Farm Equipment, Binbrook, Ont., Canada; New Dealer Growth Award, Brace Power Equipment, Carrollton, Ohio; and International Growth Award, HC Peterson & CO, Denmark.

Hunter Expands Headquarters and Announces Promotions

Hunter Industries has expanded its campus in San Marcos, Calif., and has promoted 10 senior management employees to director level positions. Three of the newly appointed directors will run sales and marketing: Steve Abernethy was promoted to director of sales—North America; Barry Pedler was promoted to director of sales—international; and Jon Truttmann was promoted to director of marketing.

Marketing has been reorganized to encompass five distinct disciplines: brand management under Lance Elliot; product management under Gene Smith and Greg Hunter; promotions management under Phil Robisch; customer relations management under Mohammad Dairi; and project management under Judy Netteland. These six will report directly to Truttman in his new role.

Hunter is also building a new distribution center and sales and marketing headquarters. The new facility will include 95,000 square feet of warehouse and 44,000 square feet of offices, and the entire sales and marketing organization will be under one roof.

Bayer Announces Marketing and Sales Changes

Bayer Environmental Science recently announced changes with marketing and sales in the Green Professional Products group.

Jason Kuhlemeier was named business manager for fipronil and classic insecticides. He is also the lawn care market lead. Previously, Kuhlemeier was marketing services/project manager.

Matt Bradley will assume the responsibilities of marketing services/project manager.  Bradley’s previous position was in Florida as a golf field sales representative.

Joe Burke was named business manager for imidacloprid and the greenhouse/nursery market lead. Previously, Burke was the controlling manager for the Environmental Science business.

There are now four sales regions for Green Professional Products. Mike Ruizzo was named northeast sales manager. Previously, he was national accounts manager. Jim Fetter was named north central sales manager. Previously, he was manager of the Lawn and Landscape sales group. Brian Tepper remains western regional sales manager, and Eric Kalasz remains the southern regional sales manager.

Bryan Gooch was named national accounts manager. Previously, he was business manager for imidacloprid products.

Smith Joins Scotts Co.

Cameron Smith has joined The Scotts Co. as territory manager for northern California, Hawaii, northern Nevada and Utah. His primary responsibilities will include developing new end-user accounts as well as maintaining existing accounts.

Smith, based in Davis, Calif., has extensive experience in specialty chemical sales within the greenhouse, nursery, landscape and turf industries. His most recent position was as a territory sales manager for Chemtura Corp. in Davis. Prior to his tenure with Chemtura, Smith served as a territory sales manager for BioWorks, Inc. Smith holds a bachelor’s degree in agricultural and environmental science and management from the University of California-Davis.

New PLM Network Member

Superior NW Tree and Shrub Care, Inc. has joined the Premier Level Member (PLM) Network of Horticultural Asset Management, Inc. (HMI). As a member of the network, a Superior NW certified arborist will conduct landscape assessments on residential and commercial properties to determine the types, sizes and condition of woody trees and shrubs. From this data, HMI’s system will establish the replacement cost valuation of each plant assessed.

Network members are able to provide property owners with risk mitigation services, repair and tree replacement services as needed. In addition, members receive work referrals, customized covers and discounted pricing on HMI’s property-specific landscape owner’s manual.

Replacement values for landscapes and individual plants can be used to establish insurance coverage requirements, help determine casualty loss values and support the asking price of a landscaped property during a real estate transaction.  

NDS Celebrates 30 Years of Putting Water in its Place

NDS, Inc. began producing plastic drainage products more than 30 years ago. Through the years, NDS has continued to innovate within the industry to expand its business across multiple categories. NDS is committed to helping reduce the environmental impact of stormwater, as well as conserving water through efficient landscape irrigation and water flow management.

Based in Woodland Hills, Calif., NDS offers the Flo-Well stormwater leaching system, Agrifim drip irrigation systems and Flo Control flow management products.

Dow AgroSciences Recognized

Dow AgroSciences LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of The Dow Chemical Co., was recognized as a winner in one category and as a finalist in four others in the AGROW Awards competition, which honors corporate and individual excellence in the crop protection and production industry.

Winners, named October 16 at a dinner and presentation in Glasgow, Scotland, included Dow AgroSciences’ EcoZome as the 2007 Best Formulation Innovation.

Dow AgroSciences was nominated and named as a finalist for Best Stewardship Program for its product stewardship and risk mitigation for ProFume fumigant; Best New Crop Protection Product for aminopyralid-containing herbicides; Most Innovative Chemistry for spinetoram; and Best Public Program for its agricultural science outreach tours.

This is the first year the awards were presented. Entries were judged by a panel of 13 industry professionals from around the world.

Corona Clipper and PLANET Join Forces

The Professional Landcare Network (PLANET) and Corona Clipper, Inc. have teamed up to create a training manual and DVD about pruning trees and shrubs. The techniques demonstrated will mirror skills required to receive PLANET’s nationally recognized Certified Landscape Technician designation.

Available in Spanish and English, the DVD focuses on shrubs and trees less than 15 feet tall, demonstrating specific pruning techniques with an emphasis on safety. The accompanying manual will include content-related questions, enabling companies to test an employee’s knowledge.

Saint-Gobain Plants Honored for Safety

Twenty-two CertainTeed and Saint-Gobain Performance Plastics manufacturing sites in the United States recently received awards for safety performance in 2006 from The Society of the Plastics Industry’s (SPI) Occupational Health and Environmental Issues Committee.

The Distinguished Safety Award recognized sites without an OSHA recordable injury or illness. These were Saint-Gobain plants in Beaverton, Mich.; Clearwater, Fla.; Mickleton, N.J.; Poestenkill, N.Y.; Seattle, Wash.; and Taunton and Worcester, Mass.

The SPI Achievement Award was earned by Saint-Gobain plants in Bridgewater, N.J.; Elk Grove, Ill.; Hoosick Falls, N.Y.; Garden Grove, Calif.; and Ravenna, Ohio, for operating without an injury or illness resulting in lost time or restricted work activity.

The Saint-Gobain facility in Bristol, R.I., and the CertainTeed facility in Social Circle, Ga., were honored with an Award of Merit for having a days-away-from-work, days of restricted activity or job transfer (DART) rate lower than the national average and a DART rate reduction of at least 20 percent.

Three Saint-Gobain plants (in Granville, N.Y.; Portage, Wis.; and Wayne, N.J.) and five CertainTeed facilities (in Buffalo, N.Y.; Jackson, Mich.; Lodi, Calif.; Waco, Texas; and Williamsport, Md.) received a Special Recognition Award for having safety performance better than the national average.

Weathermatic Acquires Ecologic

Weathermatic has acquired Ecologic, developer of the RainBrain line of rain and rain/freeze sensors.

Ecologic’s manufacturing operations will move into the Weathermatic production facility in Dallas, Texas. Ecologic founder Dave Klever will oversee the transition.

Weathermatic has manufactured landscape irrigation equipment since the 1940s and was the first company to introduce a rain sensor in the 1970s.

Klever has developed sensor products for the irrigation industry for more than 20 years. Prior to founding Ecologic, he designed rain sensors for Glen-Hilton Products.

Scotts Co. Promotes Lewis

Ryan Lewis has been promoted to the position of product manager for water soluble fertilizers for The Scotts Co.

Based in Marysville, Ohio, Lewis is responsible for all water soluble fertilizer product lines. Lewis started with Scotts in June 2006 as an assistant marketing manager for the Professional Business Group.

Prior to his tenure with Scotts, Lewis served as an assistant product manager for Union Tools, Inc. in Columbus, Ohio. He also served as a marketing assistant for Ohio State University’s Department of Athletics in Columbus. Lewis holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Fisher College of Business at Ohio State University.

Conwed Purchases Tie-Net Unit

Conwed Global Netting Solutions acquired the Tie-Net Unit of Tipper Tie, Inc., located in West Chicago, Ill. The purchase includes Tipper Tie’s knitted net products brands, Tie-Net and Net All.  

Conwed is headquartered in Minneapolis, Minn.

John Deere Names Agency of Record

John Deere Construction & Forestry Division has tapped Fergus/Peters Group, based in Des Plaines, Ill., as its public relations and advertising agency of record for its construction business.

John Deere’s partnership with Fergus/Peters officially began Nov. 1. All public relations and media activity for their construction business will be coordinated through the new agency and managed by Craig Olson, the manager of marketing communications, events and promotions for the Construction and Forestry Division.

Eagle Point Adds Job Board

Eagle Point Software Corp. announced the addition of a job board to its newest business service, Eagle Point Exchange.

This service is an on-line business community dedicated to civil engineering, land surveying and landscape architecture firms. Initially, it includes access to resources that help owners manage workload, such as a job board and Contract Connections. The exchange will evolve to provide educational materials, business templates, and connections to others in the industry to help business owners manage their organizations effectively and efficiently.