Brookfield, WI (PRWEB) September 27, 2007
Birkey's Farm Stores, Rantoul, Ill., with 10 farm equipment dealerships in Illinois and Indiana, has been chosen as 2007 Dealership of the Year from Farm Equipment magazine. The program recognizes farm equipment dealerships who are leading the industry in best practices, operations management and customer care.
Birkey's Farm Store was chosen for the award in the "Large, Multi-Store" category for its excellent equipment sales and service growth since 2004 (+30%) and management of a rapidly growing business in serving its ag customer base. More than 40 farm equipment dealerships in the U.S. and Canada were nominated for the award.
Founded in 1954, Birkey's Farm Store represents Case IH and New Holland ag lines, Case Construction and Jacobsen Golf & Turf Products, as well as ag shortline equipment manufacturers such as Kubota, Kinze, Salford, Unverferth, Brent, Bush Hog, Woods, Exmark and Cub Cadet. Led by president/CEO Ron Birkey, the ownership group includes Birkey, Mark Foster, Mike Hedge, Jeff Hedge, Mike Carley, Phil Fayhee, Jim Campbell, and Wayne Coffin. Jess Showalter, who recently retired as an owner is remaining in a sales support role. Each of the owners is an operating manager with direct-line roles in the business.
The judging panel for the Dealership of the Year program included Dr. W. David Downey, director, Center for Agricultural Business, Purdue University, West Lafayette, Ind.; David L. Kahler, Retired CEO of Ohio-Michigan Equipment Dealers Assn., Dublin, Ohio; and David R. Parker, vice president, Agribusiness Group, Indianapolis, IN.
In selecting Birkey's Farm Store for this honor, the judges noted the dealership's excellence in every phase of its business. Among the judges' comments in making the selection were:
- "Strong sales per employee for large-scale operation, strong growth in adding locations in last few years."
- "Strength in different parts of the business -- agricultural, construction and ruralpolitan markets. Moving aggressively into guidance systems."
- "Solid metrics for a large dealer, where it is much tougher to stay in control of things such as turnover, ROA and market share. A good absorption rate (71.6%) for an ag dealer, good ROA and 30% three-year growth rate, with many stores holding a market share of more than 20%."
- "Very strong benefit and development programs; focus on employees is unusual. Company is open in sharing financial information. Clearly, this dealer is doing all it can to keep employees happy and motivated."
Farm Equipment profiled the 2007 Dealerships of the Year as the cover story of its August/September 2007 edition. The complete article can be seen at http://www.farm-equipment.com.
Published by Lessiter Publications, Brookfield, Wis., Farm Equipment is a business-to-business magazine serving more than 11,000 farm equipment dealers, wholesalers and distributors throughout North America.
For more information, including photos and logos, contact Dave Kanicki, managing editor, Farm Equipment, at firstname.lastname@example.org, 800/645-8455, ext. 414.