Montebello, Calif.-based Katzkin Leather is already ahead on achieving its goals for 2014, which include enhancing its design capabilities, increasing exposure of its products to consumers and improving its installer referral program, according to the company.
Katzkin recently entered the sports car market through its partnership with VL Automotive, a design and manufacturing company for luxury performance vehicles founded by Bob Lutz, former General Motors vice chairman and a senior advisor to Katzkin, and Gilbert Villarreal, president of The Concorde Group, an automotive supplier. VL Automotive’s newest concept, the Destino luxury performance sedan, features custom-made interiors designed by Katzkin.
Entering the luxury market gives Katzkin the opportunity to align its design capabilities with a new collection of exceptional vehicles, according to Brookes Mayberry, Katzkin CEO. Katzkin’s partnership with VL Automotive also allows the company to offer its customers more choices, according to David Giddings, vice president of marketing at Katzkin.
“We were always trying to give consumers choices,” Giddings told Restyling & Truck Accessories. “Our ultimate goal is to put leather in consumers’ cars. Not only do we want to put leather in vehicles, but we also want to give you choices, so you have an interior that customized to you.”
Giddings noted that Katzkin’s partnership with VL Automotive also contributes to the health and vitality of the company’s brand.
“One of our biggest challenges is getting awareness in the marketplace and partnering with VL just gives us tremendous exposure,” Giddings said.
Making it easier for consumers to connect with restylers also is a big initiative this year for Katzkin, according to Giddings. The company is developing a refined installer referral platform for its website, which will direct consumers interested in getting Katzkin leather installed in their vehicle to a qualified installer.
“We have something like that in place right now, but it’s not nearly where we want it to be,” Giddings said. “You tell us your zip code, and we’ll tell you exactly how much it’s going to cost and where you can go to get the leather installed.”
Giddings said Katzkin is working on selecting restylers for the program, which is not easy. The company wants to make sure it chooses installers that consumers and dealerships can count on.
“We have more than 2,000 restylers in different markets, and we have to pick and choose the right ones that are going to be a part of this program,” he said. “That’s going to be a big initiative. Restylers can sign up, but we have a long history of working with a group of restylers that are good at what they do. We have strict requirements to be a preferred restyler.”
For more information, visit www.katzkin.com.
Photos courtesy of Katzkin.