|"The last year or so before Grentec
closed, we didn't have a sales manager on the RV side so I was doing both."
According to Lunder the reason why he and George went into
business was that they had the courage to do it. George interjected, "Between us, we
had the ability to structure an organization to produce and sell product."
|Donna Warr, Valterra Product
sales manager, accepted the Supplier of the Year award at the WDA Executive Conference in
October. WDA President Gary Chancy, Leisure Time Marketing, Inc., made the presentation
Dennis said, "I had known George since 1976 or 1975.
We knew the products were viable. We acquired the molds and a little product, and George
had contacts with former Grentech accounts so there was some continuity.
"Other than that it was a brand new startup. We had
to lease a building, hire employees, produce product, carry receivables and stock
inventory. Thinking back it wasn't all that scary because we were in the mix everyday and
doing what had to be done."
"George handled the marketing and sales, and I
handled all the internal operations of the company."
Valterra started by buying the Grentec molds, the
leftover RV and skateboard parts and opened up a small assembly factory in Pacoima, CA. At
first they farmed out the injection molding jobs to custom molders.
Dennis said, "We started manufacturing the waste
valves and the fittings and we made the skateboards and sold them to companies like
ToysRUs and Target. That was our beginning.
"Our main focus was the RV business. The waste
valves were our main product until the mid-1980s, and that was when the skateboard
business started taking off. The volume overtook the valve business for three or four
years. However, it tailed off as quickly as it went up." continued