Industry Update


Venture Products Earns Business Growth Award

Venture Products, Inc. has been selected for the second year in a row as a Cascade Capital Corp. Business Growth Award honoree for 2009. The awards honor businesses in Summit, Medina, Portage, Wayne, Ashland and Holmes counties in Ohio that have increased sales over the previous five years.

Tony Brown

Brown Joins Kioti

Kioti has appointed Tony Brown to the position of national sales manager. He holds a business degree from Indian River State College and has a diverse range of managerial experience at both the dealer and manufacturing levels. Brown has worked for JCB, Brevard Tractor and Berggren Equipment Co.

National Organic Leaders to Present Conference

The 2010 Midwest Organic Lawn Care & Landscaping Conference is scheduled for January 28-29, 2010, at the Monona Terrace Convention Center in Madison, Wis. The conference will be presented by Chickity Doo Doo Organic Fertilizer and feature SafeLawns Foundation founder Paul Tukey as keynote presenter, as well as landscape architect Howard Garrett, arborist Peter Wild and golf course superintendent Jeff Carlson. For more information, visit

Companies Renovate Ball Fields in Milwaukee

More than 26 ball fields in Milwaukee, Wis., got makeovers courtesy of local green industry companies. Using seed and fertilizer donated by LebanonTurf and Spring Valley, lawn and landscape firms aerated and overseeded ball fields at churches, schools and community parks. The renovations are part of the EverGreen Zone initiative, a collaborative effort with Project EverGreen to raise awareness about the benefits of green spaces.

Urban Forestry Council Welcomes New Members

The Wisconsin Urban Forestry Council welcomed five new members: Thomas Landgraf, Vijai Pandian, Jeffrey Treu, Kevin Westphal and Jeff Wolters. Members reappointed to an additional three-year term include Dr. Robert Brush, Dan Traas and Dr. Les Werner.

Rittenhouse Chosen to Supply Sprayers to China

Rittenhouse’s sprayer division is in full production to supply high-height tree sprayers and root feeding components to China. The sprayers will be used to maintain public parks and gardens.

Mid-Am Registration Open

Registration for the 2010 Mid-America Horticultural Trade Show is open on the show’s Web site at The show is scheduled for January 20-22, 2010, at McCormick Place West in Chicago, Ill. The Web site reflects the show’s theme, “Sustainability for a Greener Tomorrow,” and contains details about its programs and events.

Ken Rust

Rust Joins Kasco

Kasco Marine hired Ken Rust, whose duties will include sales and marketing assistance. His prior work experience includes over 15 years in both aquaculture and pond management. He graduated from Louisiana State University with a bachelor’s degree in animal science and a master’s in fisheries.

King Announces Contest Winners

King Innovation announced the winners of its Connect and Collect Promotion: Joe DiBlasi, Centennial, Colo.; Steve Terviel, Osage Beach, Mo.; and John Goiangios, Hartford, Conn. Each will receive one year’s worth of free DryConn Wire Connectors. The online promotion was held in conjunction with the kickoff of King’s new Web site.

Garvin Named Interim President & CEO of TCIA

Mark Garvin, chief program officer, has been named interim president and chief executive officer of the Tree Care Industry Association. He succeeds Cynthia Mills, who notified the board of directors in September that she would be leaving to take a new position and manage family responsibilities. Garvin has served in various positions at TCIA since joining the organization in 1996. He was promoted to chief program officer in 2008 from vice president of public policy and communications.

Leif Ringstad

News from Maruyama

Maruyama U.S. Inc. announced that Vice President and General Manager Thomas R. Glaze has left the company to pursue other opportunities. He was with the company for more than 20 years.

Leif Ringstad has been promoted to the position of general manager. He joined Maruyama in 2008 as national sales manager.

The company hosted its 2009 Distributor Kickoff Meeting at the Gaylord Texas resort in Dallas, Texas. The two-day event drew 18 principals representing 11 distributorships in North America. The 2010 Sales Program and several incentive plans were introduced.

Toro Acquires Assets of TYCROP

The Toro Co. has acquired certain assets from TYCROP Mfg. Ltd., Rosedale, B.C., which manufactures topdressing and material handling equipment. TYCROP products will be marketed under the Toro brand and sold through Toro’s distribution channel in the U.S. and international markets.

Gary Morgan

Morgan Travels for “Grass Routes” Effort

Gary A. Morgan, president of Dixie Chopper, spent five weeks on the road in a “grass routes” effort designed to demonstrate the company’s commitment to a successful 2010. He started in Greencastle, Ind., and attended 22 meetings with dealers in 17 states.

Ariens Acquires Parker

Ariens Co. has acquired the assets of Parker Co., Inc., Phoenix, Ariz. Ariens will continue to sell Parker products through two-step distribution channels in the outdoor power equipment market. The products will also be made available as brands sold directly to the independent dealer channel for the fall 2010 cleanup season. Ariens will produce the Parker products at its manufacturing facility in Auburn, Neb.

Yanmar Consolidates Operations

Yanmar America will relocate its industrial engine division and parts department from its current Buffalo Grove, Ill., location to its North American corporate headquarters in Adairsville, Ga. The transfer is expected to be completed by the third quarter of 2010. Sales, engineering and service groups will be maintained in Buffalo Grove.

Helac Promotes Power

Helac Corp. promoted Bill Power from chief operating officer to president. He joined Helac in 2007 and has 30 years of experience in the fluid handling industry.