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Corporate reorg improves efficiency, innovation

Matt Sink (left) and Noel DiBona

JUNE 2018 — Mickey Truck Bodies has reorganized two key responsibilities to improve its operational performance and efficiency, while at the same time sharpening its focus on product and process innovation and creativity.

Matt Sink, VP Corporate Operations, will now oversee the Engineering Team, and Noel DiBona, previously responsible for Engineering, has moved into the newly-created position of Vice President, Innovation. Both Matt and Noel will continue reporting directly to Dean Sink, President & CEO. Sean Gilboy, Beverage/EV Product Manager, and Brandon Miller, Van Product/MEV Manager, now report directly to Matt. Nick Pfeifer, Sr. Product Development Engineer, will continue reporting to Noel.

“By restructuring the Engineering Team under Matt, he now has oversight for the company’s total product operations,” says Dean. “This move will improve the operational efficiencies and productivity of each team and improve the communications between all the teams.

“Innovation will drive Mickey to the next level of excellence within the truck body and trailer manufacturing industry,” adds Dean. “In his new role, Noel will lead our efforts in finding new ways to help Mickey and its customers improve productivity and profitability.”

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School’s in at Mickey’s ‘Manufacturing Day’

(From left) Mickey’s Kyle McLaughlin, Josh Soto and Tim Hullett talk to students from East Davidson High School.

Mickey Truck Bodies teamed up this spring with Thomas Bus and Old Dominion to host students from three local high schools that offer a curriculum dedicated to manufacturing and whose students are interested in a vocational track such as welding. Dubbed “Manufacturing Day,” the students heard about career opportunities in manufacturing from company personnel and toured each of the facilities, all based in High Point.

Approximately 30 students from each school – East Davidson High School, High Point Central and Randleman High – participated in the day’s events. “We wanted to give these students the opportunity to see a manufacturing environment in action, and hopefully make a connection with future Mickey teammates,” says Tim Hullett, Mickey’s Manufacturing Training Manager.

“Our goal for this program and the visits to Mickey, Thomas and Old Dominion was to enlighten our students to the opportunities available to them for good jobs – good paying jobs – with fine companies once they graduate from high school,” says Danny Byerly, Welding Instructor at East Davidson High School.

“When you walk through our plants and campus you see all this amazing equipment and technology,” Tim told the groups. “That helps us create all of the bodies and trailers you see here – trucks that deliver beverages and batteries. Bodies that become ambulances. You see the Frito-Lay trucks with beautiful graphics. But it takes more than technology to create these products. It takes human skill sets and dedication. And we are always looking for qualified people to join the Mickey Team.”

Kyle McLaughlin, a Mickey Vice President, urged the students to take the day seriously – “This is not a day off from school,” he said. “This is an important step in understanding the opportunities you have ahead of you and what you can be preparing for as you continue on your vocational track. Great welders can earn a great living. Stay in school. Pay attention to your instructors. Take it all in. You will be grateful you did when it’s time to go to work.”

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Industry events foster knowledge sharing

Tom Arland

To help stay ahead of the trendlines within its customer industries and remain top-of-mind with fleet owners and operators, The Mickey Truck Bodies’ Sales Team attends many national, regional and company-specific conventions and conferences throughout the year.

“Any gathering of our customers and prospects presents a great learning opportunity for us,” says Tom Arland, Mickey’s Corporate VP of Sales. “Companies use these venues to discuss not only their current needs and concerns, but also to talk about the future of their businesses. At the same time, we get first-hand feedback on our product lines as well as ideas for new features and options. If an industry event is important enough for our customers to be there, it’s important enough for Mickey to be there, with our brand in prominent display.”

 In 2018 Mickey will be represented at a total of 17 conventions and conferences. This issue of The Mickey Spirit focuses on three of the most recent meetings.  

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New Mickey bodies rev up Interstate Battery crowd

Newly designed Mickey bodies were specifically designed for versatile delivery of Interstate batteries to all types for sales outlets.

Interstate Battery distributors attending the company’s biennial conference earlier this month got a charge out of the new Mickey bodies on display at the Long Beach, CA Convention Center.

One of the Mickey units that drew an “overwhelming” response from Interstate attendees was a newly designed 19,500GVWR 4-bay rear load body on a Dodge 5500, according to Dane Meyer, Mickey’s Western Regional Manager. “The new body was designed and built for conventional light duty chassis such as the Dodge 5500, Ford F550 and Chevrolet C6500. It features a front S-floor bay forward of the rear axle for stowing larger batteries in an easy-to-access lower compartment,” says Dane. The unit’s extended junk bay and smooth “drivability” also captured the attention of the Interstate contingent. “This body was specifically designed to meet the day-to-day requirements for delivering the best battery in the business.”

Just as impressive to the Interstate Route Managers, distributors and corporate team members were Mickey’s redesigned 14’ and 26’ van bodies. The 14-footer features two roll-up doors on each side of the body, heavy duty black synthetic scuff flooring, and removable battery racks for carrying new batteries and returns. “The battery rack can be loaded from the side and easily off loaded with a forklift at the end of day,” says Dane. “Distributors really liked the versatility of the van body for both large and small customer deliveries.”

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Annual fleet meet hosts receptive crowd

Drew Aloisi, Mickey’s National Sales Manager (left) chats with D.J. Harrison of AVI Foodsystems, a major food service company, during the NTPC conference.

An upbeat crowd of 1,250 attendees and 180 exhibitors at the National Private Truck Council annual meeting in April heard the overriding message that private fleets continue to bring a significant value to corporate transportation. The agenda of workshops and speakers concentrated on best management practices and model benchmarking standards used by leading private fleets, including examples of products and solutions designed to increase fleet effectiveness.

 Mickey Truck Bodies made its maiden appearance at the 2018 show in Cincinnati, OH and found the audience “very receptive to our products, features and options,” says Gary Remley, Northeast Regional Manager. “We decided to exhibit to expand our van body customer base and it was the right call. We interacted with many new prospects as well as some familiar faces. The workshops and roundtable discussions at the conference also provided great insights into the state of the industry and future needs and expectations.”

 Most attendees at the NPTC conference said they plan to grow their fleets organically by buying or leasing additional equipment in the next five years. Many plan to add both outbound and inbound lanes to private fleet routes where possible. This means hiring new drivers and acquiring new trucks and trailers beyond replacement levels.

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Water, water everywhere. And Mickey was there.

Todd Holm (left) and Steve Mason engage with Culligan dealers at CDANA show.

The independent Culligan Dealer System celebrated its new branding campaign – “Culligan Water: Our People, Our Passion & Our Purpose” – during its recent Convention & Product Fair in Orlando, FL, where its 400-plus members across North America met with leading industry suppliers to discuss the water brand’s opportunity to grow the business and increase market share.

 High up on the list of “must see” suppliers was Mickey Truck Bodies, represented by Tom Arland, Corporate VP Sales; Steve Mason, Midwest Regional Manager; and Todd Holm, MidAtlanic Regional Manager. “CDANA is the only trade association catering to the Independent Culligan Dealer and its suppliers, and this convention is a tremendous opportunity for us to develop important face-to-face relationships and share important knowledge,” says Tom. “We were able to speak to many dealers all in one action-packed place; our space was busy throughout the show. Customers wanted to review the many features and options we offer to help them deliver water more efficiently. They were genuinely grateful that we came to their show to talk about the business.”

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In-Sink: ‘Conventional’ wisdom

By Dean Sink, Mickey President

Dean Sink

At Mickey Truck Bodies we consider ourselves to be students of every industry we serve, even in those industries where we are the market leader. As much as we know about building high quality truck bodies and trailers, our learning is never ending.

That’s why members of the Mickey team attend many conventions, conferences and trade shows every year covering a wide variety of industries. They are excellent platforms for knowledge sharing, networking and collecting instant feedback about our products and services from a credible audience. At these shows we talk to our customers as well as representatives from companies that do not buy from Mickey. Either way, we hear first hand about current trends and needs as well as opportunities for products, features and services that can help us stay ahead of the curve. For us, it’s all usable, actionable information.

Of course, we don’t go to every convention open to us as exhibitor or attendee. Tom Arland, our VP Corporate Sales, and his team do an excellent job of vetting out the events that are most relevant to our company, our customers and our prospects. And while they never pass up the opportunity to make a sale, selling is not the only reason – or even the main reason – they attend these shows.

Whenever we can, we also like to have our equipment on a show floor. If a picture is worth a thousand words, imagine the power of the real thing. We make the best looking, best working bodies and trailers in the world. When fleet people actually see our products, open the doors, look inside, examine the mounting and all the features, they can’t help but be impressed.

A well organized, well attended convention is a great opportunity to meet new people who work in the same industry and share knowledge that can help everybody thrive and stay compliant with ever-changing trends, needs and regulations. There’s a tremendous amount of sharing, learning and relationship-building that can happen at these venues. In this issue of the Spirit we write about the most recent conventions we’ve attended.

And while we’re on the subject of knowledge sharing, be sure to read the story on “Manufacturing Day” at Mickey. We’re always looking for talented, ambitious people to join the Mickey team. And it’s never too early to start the process.

See you at the next show. Happy reading.

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Lay’s body a hit at PepsiCo Fleet Summit

Mickey’s Drew Aloisi (right) discusses the benefits of the new Lay’s van body.

APRIL 2018 – PepsiCo fleet supervisors, managers and field personnel who attended the soft drink and snack food giant’s Technical Training Summit last month in Arlington, TX took time out from their class schedules to visit with all the vendors who support the Pepsi and Frito-Lay brands. Mickey Truck Bodies was one of the more popular stops on the Arlington Convention Hall exhibit floor.

“This conference is much different than others because it’s focused on distribution of the PepsiCo and Frito Lay brands specifically,” says Tom Arland, Mickey’s Vice President of  Sales. “Our booth was very active because we have a strong relationship with both brands. Our new Lay’s Potato Chips van body, mounted on a Peterbilt truck and on display at the Peterbilt booth, drew a steady crowd throughout the show. Many of the PepsiCo and Frito-Lay employees thoroughly inspected the truck and really liked what they saw.”

2. The Mickey booth drew a steady flow of PepsiCo fleet managers during the Technical Training Summit in Texas.

Lay’s is one of the marquee brands of PepsiCo’s Frito-Lay division. In addition to the Lay’s Potato Chip truck (pictured), Mickey is also producing bodies for the Tostitos, Lay’s Wavy, Doritos and Ruffles brands. “Mickey Truck Bodies is excited to be building these 30-foot bodies to carry all of the prestigious Frito-Lay brands,” says Tom.

Vendors were challenged to attend the show “with new ideas and products that will support the requirements of PepsiCo into the future,” says Tom. “There was a great deal of interest in the power equipment at the show, particularly our 30-foot van body set-up for product delivery.”

Mickey has been building bodies and trailers for PepsiCo and its bottlers around the world for more than 50 years.

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ROUSH CleanTech gets EPA nod for autogas fuel system

ROUSH CleanTech (LIVONIA, MI) is the first propane autogas fuel system manufacturer to receive the Environmental Protection Agency’s and California Air Resources Board’s heavy duty-onboard diagnostics certification for all its engines. Until 2018 model year, alternative fuel vehicles had been exempt from this certification, but are now held to the same requirements as gasoline vehicles.

ROUSH CleanTech and Mickey have collaborated on a range of propane-powered trucks for many customers across several industries.

Vehicles powered by a fuel other than gasoline or diesel should no longer be considered alternative,” says ROUSH CleanTech President Todd Mouw. “As shown by the regulatory agencies decisions to require all fuels in its HD-OBD certification, propane autogas and others like compressed natural gas are moving into the mainstream.”

This HD-OBD certification applies to all vehicles over 14,000 lbs GVWR. The onboard monitors will now track and report out the continuing compliance of the emissions performance of the vehicle, as they have since 2016 for gasoline vehicles. Passenger cars and light-duty vehicles have come equipped with onboard diagnostic systems since the 1990s.

All of ROUSH CleanTech’s propane autogas-fueled vehicles with Ford 6.8L 2V and 3V engines, including medium-duty fleet vehicles, are covered under the CARB HD-OBD certification. The 3V engine is also the first and only propane autogas engine available in class 4-7 vehicles certified to the optional low nitrogen oxide level of 0.05 g/bhp-hr.

ROUSH CleanTech and Mickey Truck Bodies have collaborated on a range of propane-powered Ford trucks with Mickey beverage and van bodies for many different customers across several industries. To better support this growing demand, approximately 60 MY2018 F-650/750 chassis have been positioned at Mickey Truck Bodies’ manufacturing complex in High Point, NC to address any chassis/body needs throughout the transition to MY2019.

The ROUSH CleanTech fuel system offers fleet managers lower emissions and fuel costs without sacrificing performance or ease of ownership. With emission standards continuing to tighten, alternative fuels technologies offer a more cost effective and cleaner option.


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