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Wednesday, 12 December 2018

Tucker Powersports

Tucker and MAG Continue to Strengthen Management Teams as January’s Fort Worth Expo Nears

Tucker Powersports has announced the hiring of industry veteran Greg Blackwell to the new position of Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing. 

Blackwell adds 30 years of powersports experience with industry leaders such as KTM North America, LeMans Corporation, Metzeler Motorcycle Tire North America, and, most recently as President of MTA Distributing. 

Industry veteran Greg Blackwell joins Tucker Powersports as Senior Vice President of Sales & Marketing

Noting the Motorsport Aftermarket Group’s (MAG) strategy of hiring candidates with aftermarket or powersports credentials, interim CEO Buettner said that “we are aggressively hiring the best industry talent, and we’re thrilled to add Greg to our team. With his experience, he’ll hit the ground running and have an immediate impact. The velocity of change we are executing is necessary in this rapidly transforming industry.”
The new role has been created following the September departure of Eric Cagle after two years as President. At the time, Buettner stated that “the change in direction represents a shift in philosophy with a focus on better serving Tucker dealers and vendors.”
True to Buettner’s stated aims, Blackwell’s role will be “focused on building relationships, achieving Tucker’s sales and revenue goals, delivering an outstanding experience to dealers and growing market share through strategic partnerships.” Kenan Ikels, the current Vice President of Sales and Customer Support, will continue in his role and will report to Blackwell, with marketing becoming a separate functional group in the new organizational structure.
“I’m really impressed with Tucker’s desire to grow their business and support their dealers,” said Blackwell. “My initial focus will be on meeting with key dealers, preparing for the January Dealer Show and planning programs that benefit Tucker dealers. The future is bright for Tucker and our partners.”
Blackwell is a popular and widely respected motorcycle industry veteran, who is the “real deal” where being a rider is concerned. He is a passionate and accomplished street and off-road motorcycle rider and comes from a family with impeccable industry and riding credentials.

Hugh Charvat, new CEO of Motorsport Aftermarket Group (center), joined Board Member Mike Buettner (left) and J&P Cycles President Zach Parham for a ride in Dallas during his interview process

His brother Mark Blackwell is an AMA Hall of Famer, winner of America’s first 500 cc national championship motocross race in 1972, a motocross school instructor, and was the midwife for Polaris Industries’ entry into the motorcycle market, first with Victory, then at the time of the acquisition of the Kings Mountain, North Carolina Indian Motorcycle iteration from Stephen Julius in 2011.
Meanwhile, Tucker’s parent company Motorsport Aftermarket Group has secured the services of another “Petrol Head”, with Chairman of the Board Bob Peiser’s announcement of Hugh Charvat as the new CEO for MAG.
Commenting on the conclusion of the process to secure a successor to Andy Graves, Peiser stated that “as we stressed from the beginning, the new group of investors was focused on making the right choice for this position. We not only wanted a previously successful CEO, but also one who was passionate about powersports. We are confident that Hugh is that person. We are extremely excited about the knowledge, the experience and the passion he brings, and we believe he is the right person to help us win our customers back and return our brands to #1 in the industry.”

To date, Tucker says it has had approximately 162 brand partners committed to its 2019 show at Fort Worth in January. Of those, 21 are said to be new to the Tucker show line-up, with 11 of those being new brands for the company

Charvat has extensive experience in leadership roles at companies providing aftermarket products in the automotive and truck business. In his most recent role at APC Automotive Technologies (APC), he led an organization with more than $600m in annual revenue, 1,500 employees and nine locations in North America. Before APC, he was Chairman, President & CEO of Schrader International and had global responsibility for Schrader Electronics, Schrader Valve Group and Plews Edelman.
“Beyond his work resume, he’s got a passion for having fun on two and four wheels,” continued Peiser. “When I asked what was in his garage, I was blown away by the answer. He owns a Suzuki SV650 and a Suzuki GSF1250S, along with a selection of sportscars. His interest in fast cars isn’t just casual. He’s been both a competitor and instructor in sportscar racing, having competitive licenses with SCCA, the BMW Club and the National Auto Sports Association. He’s been a national instructor for SCCA for both open wheel and production classes. I suspect that very soon he’ll be looking at more motorcycles, and maybe a side-by-side, so he and his wife, Lori, can get out and enjoy some off-road fun.”
Charvat took up his position on November 26 and “will be moving quickly to get up-to-speed on everything that’s happening with all our brands, and at J&P Cycles and at Tucker Powersports.  He’s already planning for some extensive time visiting our locations around the country and meeting everyone in person.  And of course, the Tucker Show in January will be a great way for him to meet many of our dealers and suppliers.”
Peiser went on to thank Mike Buettner “for jumping in to serve as Interim CEO, which gave us the time to make this decision. Mike will remain as a member of the Board of Directors and a good friend of mine. He will work with Hugh to finalize our 2019 plans and provide for a smooth transition.”
Charvat and Blackwell join industry veterans John Potts (formerly of Vance & Hines) and Greg Heichelbech (formerly at Harley-Davidson, Triumph North America and BRP), who were recently added to the leadership team at MAG. John Potts returns to MAG as Global VP of Business Development, with Heichelbech heading up the MAG Accessories Group (Kuryakyn and Mustang Seats).
Meanwhile, a record number of exhibiting brands and dealer pre-registrations are being reported as Tucker gears-up for its 2019 Dealer Expo at Fort Worth in January. With some weeks still to go, Tucker Powersports said that “to date we have approximately 162 brand partners committed to our 2019 show, making it the ideal business networking event for dealers to kick-off the new year.”
Of those 162, there are 21 that are said to be new to the Tucker Show line-up, and 11 that are not only new to the show, but also new Tucker brands.
“That’s not all though, with our larger venue at the downtown Fort Worth Expo Center, we have also seen an increase in dealer pre-registrations with like for like numbers running ahead of the same time last year already.”