Optimum Vehicle Logistics (OVL)

    Address: 6110A N. Flint Road, Milwaukee, WI 53209

    Website: www.optimumvl.com

    Year founded: 2007

    Product or service offered: Distributor of spare parts and accessories for military wheeled and tracked vehicles. OvL supports all vehicle systems from mechanical parts and components to ballistic armor protection. Inventory includes parts for light, medium, and heavy-duty class trucks, armored personnel carriers, and battle tanks.

    Projected 2012 revenue: $14 million

    Leadership: Eric Dermond, chief executive officer; Stephane Dermond, president; Max Dermond, executive vice president; Doug Olson, executive vice president

    Target Clientele: Foreign ministries and armed forces, local and foreign maintenance facilities, foreign vehicle manufacturers, U.S. prime contractors, and U.S. government

    Business organization memberships: Metropolitan Milwaukee Association of Commerce, Association of the United States Army.

    What has fueled your company’s growth? “The growth is directly linked to our commitment to carry inventory during a time when others are reducing inventory. Our customers recognize the excellent customer service and value added services we offer, which sets us apart from the competition.”

    What is the biggest obstacle to your company’s growth? “Decreasing defense budgets continue to be a challenge. Additionally, competing against companies distributing lower quality unauthorized parts that sell cheaper.”

    Do you plan any changes in your company in the upcoming months? “We’re hiring two more sales representatives to help support the expansion of product. The company is also streamlining procedures and adding new equipment to improve throughput. We are currently evaluating space utilization and by end of year will begin consolidation of two warehouses down to one for cost savings and improved efficiency.”

    Who are the business people, locally or nationally, whom you admire? And what traits do those people exhibit that make you admire them? “Men and women who serve in the military to protect our country while also managing their family life. At the end of their service they are challenged with the journey to reintegrate themselves into society after making tremendous sacrifices. Every day they display discipline, dedication, courage, and selflessness to their country and their families.”

    What is the outlook for the business conditions of your industry over the next several months? “The export industry is growing due to military vehicles being purchased by overseas governments thereby creating opportunities to support these vehicles with parts requirements.”

    What is your company’s key strategy for rising out of the recession? “We are expanding our customer base and the vehicle platforms we support in order to diversify our business.”

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