RV Industry Profiles

Unyielding determination and teamwork

Taking a look at the success and growth of ArrKann Trailer & RV Centre

The ArrKann staff
The ArrKann staff is dedicated to meeting the needs of customers. — Photo courtesy of David Hill

ArrKann Trailer & RV Centre is an innovative and progressive company that has been making great strides in the RV manufacturing and retail industry. General sales manager, David Hill, took time to speak with us about the business, its history and its triumphs amidst a challenging economic climate.

When did you become involved with ArrKann Trailer & RV Centre?

I am the GSM (general sales manager) at ArrKann and have played a role in this company since 2001. My first experience, though, was in 1989 when I opened the first business office in an RV dealership with ArrKann. At that time there were no dealer plan lenders so I guess I may have pioneered the way a little back then to help RV dealerships get the recognition of banks financing the units sold through their dealerships. I was primarily in the auto industry in those days but was approached by the Friedenberg brothers to add this department to their store as a profit centre and to provide a new service to their customers.

What has been your biggest challenge so far as a businessman, and how have you overcome that challenge?

I think as an industry our greatest challenge is to meet our customers’ expectations, with the current economy being what it is and the manufacturers struggling—keeping the commitment to customer service is our biggest challenge.

How do you keep your business thriving amidst the current economic recession?

We have one of the largest service facilities in Edmonton and area with more RV techs than anyone else in the city. (We offer) full line parts and service that tries to meet or exceed our customers’ expectations in a struggling economy.

What has been your proudest moment so far?

I think the team effort that goes in on a day-to-day basis—(which) has won us the recognition of being selected (as one of) the top 10 dealers—has been one of our best accomplishments. This award does not recognize the highest volume stores but the ones that meet the criteria of improving the industry, the store and its people, and the community that supports it.

Is there anything else you would like our readers to know about you, or about ArrKann Trailer & RV Centre?

ArrKann Trailer started out of the back of a hardware store by Rubin Friedenberg back in the early ’70s. He rented fold-down trailers and grew this small portion of his business with his sons, Rick and Ken. It wasn’t long before they bought Leisurecraft, a fold-down manufacturing business, and expanded their rental fleet and wholesale company. In July of 1987, a day called Black Friday in Edmonton, the business was wiped out by the tornado that hit the city that day. After what happened…and them being fortunate enough not to have had any serious injuries or loss of lives within their ranks, they decided to enter the retail side of this industry.

The business primarily specializes in fold-downs and lightweight towable trailers, and has grown into a two-location RV dealership employing family and approximately 50 people full time plus part-time seasonal workers. Vendor stabilization and an inherent upwards trend in the manufacturing side of the business will provide a new sense of security with the customers who have chosen to make RVing a part of their lifestyle. We at ArrKann are looking forward to a good year again in 2010 and are working hard to ensure that we live up to our slogan, “Simply unbeatable.”

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