Norcold News & PR

Thetford Plans Major Marine Product Launches Next Year

October 10, 2007

ANN ARBOR, Mich. – Thetford Corporation is adding three new Norcold refrigerator lines and an all-new manual-pumping toilet to its marine-industry product line-up next year.

The Ann Arbor-based company is a leading global supplier of sanitation and refrigeration products for the marine, recreational vehicle (RV) and heavy-truck industries.

Speaking at a press conference during the International BoatBuilders’ Exhibition and Conference (IBEX) in Miami Beach, Fla. (Oct. 10-12), the company’s President and CEO, Jack Tierney, said Thetford has invested more than $2-million in developing new products for the marine market in 2008.

“Thetford will introduce more new-model refrigerators, toilets and aftermarket products for the boating community during the coming year than during any similar period in our 44-year history,” Tierney said. “With a full line-up of innovative and environmentally-friendly new products coming onstream next year, we see significant growth opportunities in the marine market for our company.”

He said Thetford plans to introduce new-model 1.7-, 2.7- and 3.1-cubic-foot Norcold refrigerators and freezers with contemporary styling, space-saving designs and energy-efficient features for marine applications. They range from $400 to $900 in price.

All three lines feature front-mounted stainless-steel or black-panel doors, heavy-duty hinges and easy-to-access controls. Individual 3.1-cubic-foot Norcold 788 Series units are available for side-by-side, under-the-counter installation as matching refrigerators, freezers or combination refrigerator-freezer units.

Thetford also will offer an all-new, manual-pumping toilet for the marine industry that it expects to become the marine toilet of choice in the future. Tierney noted that the company’s ComfortMate™ toilet offers a “revolutionary new design” that combines best-in-class comfort with a compact footprint and residential styling.

“ComfortMate™ will be the most comfortable, manual-pumping toilet available for boats when it debuts this winter,” the Thetford executive said. “It will further strengthen our position as a leading supplier of permanent as well as portable toilets for the boating industry.”

ComfortMate™ will be built at Thetford’s Baker Road manufacturing plant in Dexter, Michigan. The company expects to more than triple manual-pump-toilet sales with its introduction late during the first quarter of 2008.

The company previewed its 2008 products for boat builders and marine-industry suppliers at IBEX. More than 800 companies displayed boat-building products and technology at this year’s show. A privately-held company, Thetford has more than 1,500 employees at eight manufacturing facilities in four countries.

Norcold Awards $10,000 “Big Bear Hug Sweepstakes” Prize to Getzen

February 7, 2007

ANN ARBOR, Mich. – Joe Getzen of Walled Lake, Mich., has heard the welcome roar of the Norcold polar bear, symbol of America’s leading manufacturer of recreational vehicle (RV) refrigerators, as the $10,000 grand prize winner of Norcold’s “Big Bear Hug Sweepstakes.”

RV owners with a Norcold refrigerator built between 1989 and 2005 were eligible to enter the sweepstakes during 2006 through the Internet or by visiting a Norcold dealer or service center.

“It’s very exciting to win,” said Getzen, a local autoworker. “Norcold has helped make my RV experience with my family much more enjoyable.” He received his prize in ceremonies at Thetford Corp. headquarters in Ann Arbor.

Besides Getzen, 5,000 other instant winners in the sweepstakes got their “paws” on Thetford-brand Giant Wipes to keep their RV’s sparkling clean. Thetford Pre-moistened RV Care Giant Wipes are lint- and streak-free, safe for all finishes and require no rinsing.

“Joe and all of the other RVers who participated in the sweepstakes made it very special,” said Kevin Phillips, Vice President, Sales and Marketing. “The support we receive from Norcold consumers is gratifying and underscores our commitment to them.”

Based in Sidney, Ohio, Norcold is a subsidiary of Thetford Corp. of Ann Arbor, the world’s leading supplier of sanitation and refrigeration products for the RV, marine and heavy-duty truck industries. A privately-held company, Thetford has more than 1,350 employees at eight manufacturing facilities in four countries.

Norcold 1210 Celebrates 10th Birthday – Still Sets Standard In Size, Functionality

November 20, 2006

SIDNEY, Ohio – First introduced at the 1996 RVIA National Trade Show, Norcold’s UltraLine 1200LR was a huge RV industry innovation.

After all, the 12-cubic foot gas-absorption refrigerator represented an amazing 50 percent jump in storage space over the then largest two-door model. Most importantly, it allowed RV manufacturers to significantly upgrade their top-of-the-line models.

Now 10 years and more than 100,000 units sold later, it remains the standard for those seeking more homelike, greater capacity, clean design and functionality. The recently-rechristened, four-door 1210 features two freezer compartments, built-in diagnostics and made-in-America quality backed by an industry-best, 3-year warranty.

These attributes underscore its status as one of the largest, most convenient and usable RV refrigerators ever – only recently eclipsed by Norcold’s new 17-foot model, the 2117, which debuts at the 2006 RVIA Show.

On its way to this 10th birthday, the 1210 has undergone a number of significant improvements, including an elegant exterior redesign, more usable space, curved bins, stacked vegetable crispers with nearly one-cubic-foot of storage space, and the first-ever chilled water dispenser on a RV refrigerator.

“We asked consumers what they wanted inside in a premium refrigerator,” said Kevin Phillips, Vice President of Sales & Marketing. “We listened and worked hard to deliver those ‘wow’ features.”

The 1210 also boasts these important consumer advantages over comparable competitive models:

  • 41 pounds lighter
  • One-cubic-foot more freezer volume
  • 1/2-cubic-foot more total volume
  • A full-width fresh food section
  • Handles that provide easy-open operation
  • Overall better freezer performance with faster pull-down time
  • Eye-level controls with nine temperature gradations
  • No requirement for a heat pipe or large evaporator in the freezer

In addition, all 1210 shelves and door bins are removable and adjustable to multiple positions for maximum storage flexibility. They’re easy-to-clean and won’t tarnish.

The fresh-food compartment has more than 26 inches of unobstructed interior width and 8.4-cubic feet storage. The freezer compartments combine for 3.6-cubic feet of storage.

“Time has been good to the 1210,” Phillips said. “It’s been refined to the point that its features and benefits enhance everyone’s RV, image and lifestyle.” Norcold is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Ann Arbor-based Thetford, a world leader in recreational products, including sanitation, refrigeration and other RV and marine care products.

Pair Promoted at Thetford, Norcold

November 16, 2006

ANN ARBOR, Mich. – Effective Nov. 1, Wayne Lorek and Doug Shirey received promotions at Thetford Corporation and Norcold, Inc.

Lorek was named Vice President of Operations, North America, for Thetford and Norcold, while Shirey becomes Director of Manufacturing for Thetford and Norcold’s North American Operations.

In the new role, Lorek gains responsibility for North American Operations functions, including Norcold logistics, all North American manufacturing operations, purchasing and lean systems.

Norcold has greatly increased productivity since Lorek joined the company in 2001 as Director of Operations. He, wife Donna and their three children live in Troy, Ohio.

In addition to his current Thetford responsibilities, Shirey adds responsibility for Norcold manufacturing, including manufacturing engineering and materials.

Shirey joined Thetford in 2001 as Plant Manager responsible for the Baker Road Operation and Jackson Road Chemical facility. Since then, he and his team have set the industry standard for lean implementation and process improvement in RV sanitation. He and wife Dorene reside in Dexter, Mich.

Norcold is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Ann Arbor-based Thetford, a world leader in recreational products, including sanitation, refrigeration and other RV and marine care products.

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