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Employee Retention of Polaris Industries -
April 15th, 2011
Polaris Industries (NYSE: PII) is a manufacturer of snowmobiles, ATV, and neighborhood electric vehicles. Polaris is based in Medina, Minnesota, USA. The company also manufactures motorcycles through its Victory Motorcycles subsidiary. Polaris no longer produces watercraft.
Robin (a subsidiary of Fuji Heavy Industries, which is the owner of Subaru) develops and supplies all-terrain vehicle (ATV) and snowmobile engines for U.S.-based leisure equipment maker Polaris Industries Inc. Starting in 1995 with the Polaris Magnum 425 4-stroke atv and in 1997, with the introduction of the "twin 700" snowmobile engine Polaris started the development and production of in-house produced powerplants, known as the "Liberty" line of engines, now found in many models across their current production lines. This production makes many Polaris products 100% American made. Fuji Heavy Industries now also maintains a US based production plant, in conjunction with Polaris, so that all engines are now American Made.
In late 2005, Polaris Industries announced that it would purchase a portion of KTM Motorcycles. Through this venture KTM has developed their own ATV and Polaris has developed Sport ATVs which utilize the KTM 525 and 450 powerplants that have seen great success on the ATV racing circuit.
In 2008, Polaris started backing H-Bomb films freestyle/race team The Bomb Squad. Alongside the Bomb Squad, Polaris also sponsors their own team, which has racers in all the GNCC, WORCS, WPSA, and ITP QuadCross series.
Minneapolis, Minn. (March 5, 2010) – Polaris Industries Inc. (NYSE: PII) announced today it is continuing a 28 year annual tradition of profit-sharing with its employees. The Company will distribute today nearly $10 million of its profits from the 2009 calendar year among approximately 2,200 hourly and non-salaried Polaris employees. On average, each of these employees will receive nearly 15 percent of their annual pay base. In addition, Polaris will distribute profit-sharing payments to each of its fulltime salaried employees today as well.
“Profit-sharing is something that is very important and fundamental to the culture at Polaris, especially as we continue to outperform the industry,” said Scott Wine, Chief Executive Officer. “We understand that Polaris’ success is built on a foundation of dedication, innovation, and hard work from our employees. To acknowledge and reward that extra effort is something we are proud to continue.”
Polaris began sharing its profits with employees in 1982, embracing the idea that the Company’s success is dependent on dedication and tireless work from its employees, and therefore, each employee was entitled to benefit from that success. Since its inception, Polaris’s profit-sharing program has shared cumulatively over $200 million with its hourly and non-salaried employees.
With annual 2009 sales of $1.6 billion, Polaris designs, engineers, manufactures and markets off-road vehicles (ORVs), including all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) and the Polaris RANGER®, snowmobiles and Victory Motorcycles® for recreational and utility use and has recently introduced a new on-road electric powered neighborhood vehicle. Polaris is a recognized leader in the snowmobile industry, and one of the largest manufacturers of ORVs in the world. Victory Motorcycles, established in 1998 and representing the first all-new American-made motorcycle from a major company in nearly 60 years, are rapidly making impressive in-roads into the cruiser and touring motorcycle marketplace. Polaris also enhances the riding experience with a complete line of Pure Polaris® apparel, accessories and parts, available at Polaris dealerships. Polaris Industries Inc. trades on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol “PII,” and the Company is included in the S&P Small-Cap 600 stock price index.
Polaris developed an internal survey tool to collect customer feedback. One of the major initiatives the internal tool was used for was the ongoing measurement of customer satisfaction through monthly surveys. Unfortunately, the internal tool did not allow for the look and feel to be customized causing surveys to look dated. When creating surveys, it was difficult to add images on the fly. As a result, the research manager had to coordinate with the IT department to upload an image. Aside from the rigidity, a big complaint from the market research managers was surveys were not welcoming and were a poor extension of the Polaris brand.
Polaris is a member of the Recreational Off-Highway Vehicle Association (“ROHVA”) which was established to promote the safe and responsible use of side-by-side vehicles also known as Recreational Off-Highway Vehicles (“ROVs”). Since early 2008, ROHVA has been engaged in a comprehensive process for developing a voluntary standard for equipment, configuration and performance requirements of ROVs through the American National Standards Institute (“ANSI”). Comments on the draft standard have been actively solicited from the CPSC and other stakeholders as part of the ANSI process. In addition, members of ROHVA have met on numerous occasions with the CPSC to discuss the draft standard. The draft standard addresses stability, occupant protection and retention as well as other safety performance criteria. The ANSI standard is scheduled to be published in early 2010 and upon publication will be immediately opened for maintenance and revision in accordance with the ANSI process to evaluate additional safety provisions.
On October 28, 2009, the Consumer Product Safety Commission published an advance notice of proposed rulemaking regarding ROVs. Polaris RANGER and RZR side-by-side vehicles are included in the ROV category. In its notice, the CPSC stated that it was reviewing the risk of injury associated with ROVs and beginning a rule-making procedure under the Consumer Product Safety Act. The CPSC also noted the draft ANSI standard developed by ROHVA and expressed concerns with the draft standard in the areas of vehicle stability, vehicle handling, and occupant retention and protection. Polaris is a member of ROHVA, which is preparing written comments and a technical response to the CPSC notice. This response and all other public comments are due to the CPSC by March 15, 2010. Polaris is unable to predict the outcome of the CPSC rule-making procedure and the ultimate impact of the procedure or any resulting rules on its business and operating results.
Polaris is a member of the International Snowmobile Manufacturers Association (“ISMA”), a trade association formed to promote safety in the manufacture and use of snowmobiles, among other things. ISMA members include all of the major snowmobile manufacturers. The ISMA members are also members of the Snowmobile Safety and Certification Committee, which promulgated voluntary sound and safety standards for snowmobiles that have been adopted as regulations in some U.S. states and in Canada. These standards require testing and evaluation by an independent testing laboratory. Polaris believes that its snowmobiles have always complied with safety standards relevant to snowmobiles.
Victory motorcycles are subject to federal vehicle safety standards administered by NHTSA. Victory motorcycles are also subject to various state vehicle safety standards. Polaris believes that its motorcycles have always complied with safety standards relevant to motorcycles.
Polaris products are also subject to international standards related to safety in places where it sells its products outside the United States. Polaris believes that its Victory motorcycles, ATVs, off-road side-by-side vehicles and snowmobiles have always complied with applicable safety standards in the United States and internationally.
Emissions. The federal Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) and the California Air Resources Board (“CARB”) have adopted emissions regulations applicable to Polaris products.
We are a member of the Recreational Off-Highway Vehicle Association (“ROHVA”), which was established to
promote the safe and responsible use of side-by-side vehicles also known as Recreational Off-Highway Vehicles
(“ROVs”). Since early 2008, ROHVA has been engaged in a comprehensive process for developing a voluntary
standard for equipment, configuration and performance requirements of ROVs through ANSI. Comments on the
draft standard were actively solicited from the CPSC and other stakeholders as part of the ANSI process. The
standard, which addresses stability, occupant retention, and other safety performance criteria, was approved and
published by ANSI in March, 2010. The standard was then immediately opened for maintenance and revision in
accordance with the ANSI process to evaluate additional safety provisions.