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Dealer Profi le


Jeff’s Small Engine


Jeff’s Small Engine


• Location: Milltown, Wis., about an hour from Minneapolis and St. Paul, Minn.


• Founded: 1982 • Employees: 6


• Lines: Billy Goat, Echo, Exmark, Husqvarna, Honda and Toro. The deal- ership also carries Aluma trailers.


• Service: Dealership sells and repairs Briggs & Stratton, Honda, Kawasaki, Kohler and Tecumseh engines Aftermarket parts suppliers include Oregon, Stens and Parts Unlimited.


• 2012 Sales: $1 Million Jeff and Karyn Kruse own Jeff’s Small Engine, a repair shop in Milltown, Wis., that has grown its business through parts sales. Create Your Niche


to Increase Parts Sales Jeff’s Small Engine increases parts revenues by supplying smaller dealers and the recreational market.


Lynn Marcinkowski Woolf Managing Editor


E


ngine repair has been the cor- nerstone of Jeff Kruse’s deal- ership since its beginnings 30 years ago. However, he’s been able to triple the parts segment of his business in the last three years because of two strategies: Carrying a wide variety of parts and selling parts to other dealers. With today’s trend toward multi- store locations, Jeff’s single location in Milltown, Wis., may be considered a small dealership. However, Kruse is proud of the fact that he’s crossed the $1 million mark in overall revenue.


“It was huge for me to get to that point and now we’ve hit that target for three years,” he says.


Growing a


Family Dealership Kruse says he’s been doing the same job since he was 12 years old, when he began helping his dad at his repair shop, Chuck’s Repair. Their main business was fi xing cars and trac- tors, but they also sold and fi xed lawn mowers and snowmobiles. Kruse start- ed his own repair business in 1982 and combined with his dad’s company in 1990. In the early days, he sold Hahn lawn mowers, Poulan chainsaws and


22 RURAL LIFESTYLE DEALER  SPRING 2013


Lawn-Boy mowers and over the years his lines evolved based on manufac- turer buy-outs.


“Gilson bought out Hahn. Lawn-Boy bought out Gilson. Toro bought out Lawn-Boy and Toro bought Exmark. We’ve basically stuck with the same brand, but they’ve been bought out by different companies,” he says. Today, his commercial equip- ment lines include Billy Goat, Echo and Exmark. His consumer lawn and garden lines include Husqvarna and Toro equipment and Honda genera- tors. He sells and services Briggs & Stratton, Honda, Kawasaki, Kohler and Tecumseh engines and also sells


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