Spartan Motors Utilizes Voice of Market to Develop Latest Concepts
Process is a Key Contributor to Sales and Backlog Growth
INDIANAPOLIS, April 25, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Spartan Motors, Inc.
(Nasdaq:SPAR) ("Spartan" or the "Company") prides itself on utilizing the
voice of the market (VOM) to develop innovations. Today through Saturday at
the Fire Department Instructors Conference (FDIC), the Company will have
several concept products on display for feedback.
"Spartan Motors finds great importance in the voice of the market process,"
said John Sztykiel, President and CEO of Spartan Motors. "As a
'customer-centric' organization, voice of the market is the cornerstone of our
product development process, and events like FDIC provide a very efficient
means to gather feedback on new products/services and unmet needs from a broad
cross section of the market, particularly decision makers and international
The Mobile Hotspot and Connectivity concepts on display at FDIC are excellent
examples of Spartan utilizing the voice of the market process. In August 2012,
Spartan Motors executives spoke with Chief Steve Lohr of the Montgomery (MD)
Fire Department in regard to the need for 100% emergency response
connectivity, enabling all required communications. Soon thereafter, Hurricane
Sandy hit the East Coast – disabling communications for many first responders,
as over 25% of the cell towers were inoperative. More recently, following the
latest tragedy during the Boston Marathon; cell towers were overloaded and
inoperable at times, creating communication issues for first responders.
Following the discussion with Chief Lohr, Spartan's technical teams embraced
this need and quickly developed the Mobile Hotspot concept, which can be found
in the Spartan Chassis booth (no. 2510) at FDIC this year. Over the next three
days, Spartan Engineers will demonstrate this solution, discuss the enabling
technologies and user interface, and then capture customer feedback to further
optimize the solution.
"What's great is we engaged with the marketplace, listened proactively and
developed this product with speed. This VOM process is a key contributor to
the sales and backlog growth," said Sztykiel.
The company utilizes a collection of research techniques to drive the VOM
process, which fall into two classifications:
*Observational techniques: ethnographic research
*One-on-one interviews: intercepts
*Tracking surveys: Brand/communications tracking studies
*Segmentation studies: end-user or firmographics
The voice of market process is a critical part of creating products that
redefine technology and innovation and extend the Company's core markets, both
which are a part of Spartan's D.R.I.V.E. business strategy.
oRedefining Technology and Innovation, Develop Exciting Products Value
oIntegration of the Enterprise to Achieve Operational Improvement
oExtend Our Core Markets
Building on this plan, D.R.I.V.E. encourages heightened focus, teamwork and a
common approach. It will align associate efforts and emphasize the importance
of both collaboration and integration across business units. This strategy
will enable diversification and limit exposure to industry cyclicality.
About Spartan Motors
Spartan Motors, Inc. designs, engineers and manufactures specialty chassis,
specialty vehicles, truck bodies and aftermarket parts for the recreational
vehicle (RV), emergency response, government services, defense, and delivery
and service markets. The Company's brand names – Spartan™, Spartan Chassis™,
Spartan ER™, Spartan ERV™ and Utilimaster® - are known for quality,
performance, service and first-to-market innovation. The Company employs
approximately 1,700 associates at facilities in Michigan, Pennsylvania, South
Dakota, Indiana and Florida. Spartan reported sales of $471 million in 2012
and is focused on becoming a global leader in the design, engineering and
manufacture of specialty vehicles and chassis. Visit Spartan Motors at
This release contains several forward-looking statements that are not
historical facts, including statements concerning our business, strategic
position, financial strength, future plans, objectives, and the performance of
our products. These statements can be identified by words such as "believe,"
"expect," "intend," "potential," "future," "may," "will," "should," and
similar expressions regarding future expectations. These forward-looking
statements involve various known and unknown risks, uncertainties, and
assumptions that are difficult to predict with regard to timing, extent, and
likelihood. Therefore, actual performance and results may materially differ
from what may be expressed or forecasted in such forward-looking statements.
Factors that could contribute to these differences include operational and
other complications that may arise affecting the implementation of our plans
and business objectives; continued pressures caused by economic conditions and
the pace and extent of the economic recovery; challenges that may arise in
connection with the integration of new businesses or assets we acquire or the
disposition of assets; issues unique to government contracting, such as
competitive bidding processes, qualification requirements, and delays or
changes in funding; disruptions within our dealer network; changes in our
relationships with major customers, suppliers, or other business partners,
including Isuzu; changes in the demand or supply of products within our
markets or raw materials needed to manufacture those products; and changes in
laws and regulations affecting our business. Other factors that could affect
outcomes are set forth in our Annual Report on Form 10-K and other filings we
make with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), which are available at
www.sec.gov or our website. All forward-looking statements in this release are
qualified by this paragraph. Investors should not place undue reliance on
forward-looking statements as a prediction of actual results. We undertake no
obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements in this
release, whether as a result of new information, future events, or otherwise.
CONTACT: Russell T. Chick
Corporate Director of Marketing
Spartan Motors, Inc.
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