The Champion Company is adding a handful of new employees to put more emphasis on its specialty products, and to enhance its reputation with customers.
The 135-year-old Springfield company hired three account executives to serve customers in the government and military segment, commercial aerospace and spare parts and refurbishment. Todd DeVore, vice president and general manager, said more hiring is possible in the future, but the recent additions will allow the company to focus more specialized attention on those portions of its business.
Previously, the company’s sales efforts were not as focused as they could be, DeVore said.
“We’ve been trying to focus too few people on too many items and not allowing them to specialize in the ways that we need,” he said. “That’s why we have refocused based on market segment. We now have three dedicated professional sales people who are focused on the market spaces.”
The company is split into two divisions and has slightly fewer than 100 employees overall. The funeral side of the business makes embalming fluid and other products. The special products division is geared more toward aviation, military and defense industries. Among other items, the company manufactures storage containers, engine stands and other ground support equipment used to transport large, heavy items such as engines.
The new positions, which have been filled, include a government and military account executive, a commercial aerospace account executive and a spare parts and refurbishment specialist. DeVore said the new employees are experts in those areas who will serve as a liaison between the company and its customers.
In addition, DeVore said the new hires will help build the reputation for the company’s products with customers. He said the company is not the largest competitor in its market, but is striving to become more competitive by being more responsive to customers.
“Certainly we want to improve sales by just focusing on those areas and giving them the attention that they deserve,” DeVore said. “But we’re definitely in this in an effort to make a deeper penetration into all those spaces where perhaps our names hadn’t been as well known in the past but also by ensuring that we’re bringing better products to the market to serve their needs.”