Dave Zerfoss joined Husqvarna as President in 1991 and during his 18 year tenure he grew sales by 1700%. He created a strategic plan to transition the company from an import/distributor system to a dealer direct and national accounts sales organization. He led this Greenfield endeavor by setting up new sales teams and processes, warehousing/logistic, marketing, product management, customer service, finance/credit, technical service and administrative functions. He successfully negotiated agreements with distributors, led a plan to add thousands of new dealers and subsequently created dealer direct distribution coast to coast to over 10,000 independent retail and rental equipment dealers.
He negotiated new business contracts with national retail chains Lowe's, Sears and Tractor Supply while maintaining dealer mindshare and continuing to grow the independent dealer business.
Zerfoss is an experienced business integrator and incorporated former distributors' and other company divisions' customers, brands, and employees into a unified company and culture. While still leading the U.S. efforts, he took the helm of the Canada dealer division for 3 years in order to duplicate the new dealer direct structure and ultimately created dealer direct sales in Canada as well.
Prior to Husqvarna, Zerfoss was General Sales Manager for German based, STIHL, a manufacturer of chain saws and other handheld power equipment for professionals, farmers and consumers. He began his career with Exxon as a Regional Sales Representative, progressing though Strategic Business Analysis, Real Estate Acquisition and Business Owner/Employee Training). He also worked for Leisure Time Distributors (marine and recreational products) as VP of Sales and Marketing.
Zerfoss served as Board Member for 15 years and two times as Chairman of Outdoor Power Equipment Institute (OPEI), working on critical industry and company issues such as EPA regulations, California Air Resources Board (CARB), plus ANSI and other federal, state and municipal regulations. Concurrently, he also served as Board Member for 12 years and Chairman, Portable Power Equipment Manufacturers Association (PPEMA). He led OPEI, Planet and PGMS (industry and professional landscape associations) in merging the two largest outdoor power equipment and landscaping trade shows into one successful trade show. He also negotiated the successful merger of two industry associations, PPEMA into OPEI.
An avid NASCAR race fan, Zerfoss enjoyed many years of entertaining customers at racing events across the country and utilized his public speaking talents to motivate and guide independent business owners as well as his employees into racing toward achieving their goals.