It’s not like we’ll ever go around wearing superhero capes here at our company, nor will we ever take principal credit for keeping the American RV industry from the edge of bankruptcy. But it has to be said, and accurately so, that when the Great Recession hit our shores in 2008, we played our part in making sure things stayed afloat. The Great Recession sent shockwaves rippling through every sector of the country. One of those regions most impacted was the already hard-pressed Midwestern Rust Belt, which had lost hundreds of thousands of manufacturing jobs due to outsourcing and automation throughout the first years of the decade. In the course of a few years, Midwestern cities had eroded noticeably. Huge sections of Detroit lay abandoned to the weeds and spray-paint. And small, one-industry towns across Michigan, Indiana, Ohio, and western Pennsylvania went up for sale seemingly overnight once their factories shut down.
One industry powerfully affected by the downturn was the RV industry. With the widespread devaluation of real estate across America, it suddenly didn’t seem like a great idea to go out and buy an RV, especially when one’s home was up for foreclosure. The RV industry – much of it based in South-Central Michigan as well as Elkhart and South Bend, Indiana – turned to PMI to help keep its costs down. Since we’d already provided considerable numbers of parts for the RV industry, it was only natural for them to look to us for some leeway during hard times.
When times got tough, we didn’t let them down. Our company went into overdrive in making sure that our loyal customers were provided for in hard times as well as boom times. We cut the costs of our parts and services, and strategized many hours of the day to insure that a down-on-its-luck industry would rise to its feet again.
The RV industry is already making a comeback. Sales and rentals are up across the board, profits are being made, and RV industry towns that hovered on the brink of vacancy are finding new ways for life to go on. It’s not as though we bailed out the Big Three or anything, but from our standpoint, we’re glad to say that when the going got tough, we didn’t flag or fail our trusted clientele.