Legendary Companies, based in Chattanooga, Tennessee, is the holding company comprised of leading manufacturers of collector car and motorcycle wheels and tires, which includes Coker Tire, Wheel Vintiques, Universal Vintage Tire, Phoenix Race Tires, Specialty Wheel, MOR, Vintage Wheel Works, PS Engineering and Roadster Wire Wheel. Legendary Companies is backed by private equity firm Irving Place Capital (“IPC”).
Legendary Companies’ corporate office is located in Chattanooga, TN. The company founded in 1958 has approximately 110 total employees and operates out of five (5) facilities located in Chattanooga, TN (2 facilities); City of Industry, CA; Hershey, PA; and Holzkirchen, Germany (near Munich).
Key Responsibilities, Skills & Competencies:
The General Manager (“GM”) oversees all aspects of Wheel Vintiques and Coker Tire operations in the City of Industry, CA location. This position will have full profit & loss (“P&L”) responsibility of the site and will be expected to lead the local management team in developing and executing the strategic plan to drive continued revenue growth and increased profitability of the operation. The position oversees labor relations in a non-union environment and administrates policies and performance management activities in coordination with senior leaders from Legendary Companies’ corporate staff.
The GM will be responsible for a wide range of local functions, including
Sales & Marketing
Inventory control and procurement
All aspects of manufacturing and distribution
Safety and regulatory compliance
Facility and equipment management
Assess the overall operational capability of the City of Industry plant; develop a short term and long-term strategy for commercial growth and profitability.
Develop a commercial sales and marketing plan to: (i) expand current business/accounts; and (ii) build new profitable business consistent with historic EBITDA margins.
Create a close and ongoing collaboration with the Legendary Companies leadership team to further drive profitable growth and new product sales.
Strengthen Wheel Vintiques’ brand awareness among direct and distribution channels.
Provide a safe and environmentally-sound production facility for the company and its employees.
Create and drive a best-in-class and lean manufacturing operation and promote an organizational mindset of process-orientation and commitment to continuous improvement.
Manage the supply chain strategically, searching for opportunities to leverage supplier capabilities in complex applications and to take cost out of products without sacrificing quality and functionality.
Develop a mindset of driving costs out of the business while raising the bar on quality, customer service and delivery through more consistent processes.
Drives a culture of root cause and permanent corrective action for safety and quality failures.
Assess strength and growth potential of current product lines and make intelligent investments in high growth areas.
Develops capital plan to support goals and objectives for the site.
Represent the business with major customers, stakeholders, at trade events, and in the community.
Utilize voice of customer as well as market and competitive analysis to identify product line gaps and opportunities for innovation and develop/drive a product development road map to seize these opportunities.
Create an environment of financial rigor and clear metrics and ensure that corrective actions are taken when financial performance lags.
Develop and manage the operating budget and ensure achievement of financial goals.
Develop a cohesive and high-performance leadership team which promotes cross-functional collaboration and cooperation.
Establish and maintain an effective system of communication throughout the organization.
Establish and communicate short and long-range goals, objectives, and policies.
Review the overall business results, comparing them to established objectives, and taking steps to correct unsatisfactory results.
Lead the team, providing a supportive environment, information, guidance, direction, and authority to ensure execution of operating plans in accordance with the company’s strategy and objectives.
Oversee daily operations through monitoring reports, conducting staff meetings, and providing personal contact to assure integration of workflow, timely production, budgetary conformance and utilization of personal skills and machines.
Create a culture that values intelligent risk taking, people development and engagement, while constantly driving for performance.
Key Success Factors (First 6 Months):
Determines operational capability and develops a manufacturing plan designed to maximize daily throughput.
Implement supply chain management processes that ensure raw material stocking levels are optimal for JIT manufacturing operations.
Identifies and implement new process improvements to drive productivity and improve quality.
Identifies and implement key process changes to improve safety and customer service.
Builds confidence and trust with the existing customers while actively growing the customer base; develops written account development plans for each customer and executes accordingly.
Measures all aspects of the business to clearly defined KPIs and implements improvement plan to improve labor productivity and reduce quality complaints.
Establishes an effective communication cadence of company values, strategy and goals while enhancing company culture.
Establishes clear expectations of subordinates and ensures accountability of stated objectives.
Key skills and competencies of the position include, but are not limited to:
P&L (Profit/Loss) experience.
Strong belief in people development; creating an engaged and high-performance work culture.
Hands-on leader who loves to engage at all levels and can get in the details, but who at the same time understands how to delegate.
Recruits, develops, and retains a talented and energetic leadership team.
Solid marketing capabilities, with a good understanding of market segmentation, product line profitability analysis, and new product development.
Improves operational efficiencies and profitability within a manufacturing environment.
Effective problem solving and analytical skills.
Experience transforming organizations and managing change.
Working knowledge of OSHA in an industrial environment.
Ability to coach, lead and motivate to achieve results through the team.
Demonstrated experience and knowledge of financial statements, and how to read and interpret them.
Well organized and a user of intelligent metrics.
Excellent interpersonal skills and ability to multi-task.
Professional Qualifications & Minimum Education Requirements
The successful candidate’s qualifications will include:
Accredited 4-year college degree in Business Administration or Engineering - required. MBA preferred.
Proven P&L experience – at least 5 years.
Strong financial acumen including knowledge of diverse business models and selling channels.
Demonstrative previous experience whereby the candidate delivered exceptional results in areas related to strategic growth and operational initiatives.
Demonstrated previous experience working with U.S.-centric businesses that have commercial interests, supply chain partners and exposure in international markets.
Certified or professionally trained in LEAN manufacturing or Six-Sigma Green belt certification required – Six Sigma Black belt certification preferred.
This job operates in both a professional office environment and production/manufacturing environment. This role routinely uses standard office equipment such as computers, phones, photocopiers, filing cabinets and fax machines. The use of forklift, power tools, ladders and other warehouse equipment is routine. Noise level varies. Temperature varies depending on weather.
The individual in this position may spend several hours sitting and using office equipment and computers, which can cause muscle strain. He/she may be expected to occasionally lift as much as 75 pounds and frequently lift 40 pounds.
Unless other arrangements are made with supervisor, the individual in this position works a full-time schedule week during standard business hours. Limited travel may be required.
More About Legendary Companies
Wade Kawasaki is Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Legendary Companies and joined the company in 2010. He has over 30 years of experience in automotive aftermarket businesses. Additionally, Mr. Kawasaki previously served as Chairman of Specialty Equipment Market Association (“SEMA”). SEMA is the leading trade association within the industry, consisting of a diverse group of manufacturers, distributors, retailers, publishing companies, auto restorers, street-rod builders, restylers, car clubs, race teams and more. Each year, SEMA hosts an enormous trade show in Las Vegas, Nevada. This is where manufacturers unveil their latest offerings, while buyers, distributors and members of the press come to see it all.
Irving Place Capital (“IPC”) partnered with Wade Kawasaki and the management team to acquire the business in November of 2018, as a continuation of the firm’s focus on specialty manufacturing and distribution companies. IPC’s investment thesis: “An opportunity to acquire a family-owned, highly-defensible, market leading provider of tires and wheels for classic cars. Legendary Companies represents a platform to pursue a build-up strategy in the vehicle aftermarket industry that leverages the company’s established business processes, including its direct-to-consumer competencies”.
Other IPC platform investments include: Alpha Packaging, Dynojet Research, and Mold-Rite Plastics. Since its formation in 1997, IPC has been an investor in more than 60 companies and has raised over $4.0 billion of equity capital. Learn more at www.irvingplacecapital.com
About Coker Tire Company
As the world’s largest supplier of collector car tires and wheels, Coker Tire has been supplying enthusiasts with the right tires and wheels for their antiques, classics, hot rods, and muscle cars since 1958! The company has grown in leaps and bounds since its early beginnings. Coker Tire is known for whitewall tires, but offers thousands of specialty tires and wheels for a wide range of applications. Whether a classic car, a vintage truck, a custom motorcycle or anything in between, Coker Tire has a tire and wheel to fit.