Yamaha Expands Southeast Parts Depot

Yamaha is preparing a 200,000 sq-ft expansion of its parts depot in Kennesaw, Ga., as part of a plan to increase capacity and streamline the dealer ordering process for WaveRunner and boat parts, accessories and apparel.

"We are making important investments in our business and our facilities that will improve how we work with our dealers," says Bryan Seti, Yamaha's national marketing manager.

Yamaha's Kennesaw facility occupies some 33 acres and includes 80,000 sq. ft. of office space and 192,000 sq. ft. of warehouse space. The expansion, to be completed in March, will increase warehouse space to approximately 400,000 sq. ft. of floor space and expand mezzanine storage capacity by 22,000 sq. ft. The company also expects efficiency gains of 20 to 25 percent from the installation of new order tracking and conveyance systems for parts and accessories.

"By doubling the size of our current facility and adding state-of-the-art technologies and processes to our operations, we are making important steps toward this goal that will be instantly realized across our national dealer base," says Frank Pittman, division manager for Yamaha's customer support group.

Yamaha opened its offices in Kennesaw in 1997. The expansion in Kennesaw marks the latest growth for Yamaha in the Southeast, where the OEM also operates Yamaha Motor Manufacturing Corp. of America (YMMC), Yamaha Golf-Car Co., Century Boat Co., Tennessee Water Craft Inc. and Skeeter Products Inc.

Located in Newnan, Ga., YMMC was formed in 1986 and served as Yamaha's first foreign manufacturing operation in a highly developed country. The company manufactures four recreational product lines, including golf cars, ATVs, personal watercraft and side-by-side utility vehicles, in three facilities there. YMMC began producing golf cars in 1987, PWC in 1989, and rolled the first ATV — a BearTracker — off of the assembly line in 1998.

In 2002 Yamaha spent $36 million to expand ATV production in Newnan. The addition bumped annual ATV production capacity to about 100,000 units from a previous 60,000 units.

More recently, YMMC signed a multiyear lease for a 200,000 sq. ft. warehouse adjacent to its production facilities. The company says the new facility enabled it to improve its incoming parts operation, which deals with about 140 outside suppliers.

Submitted by Guido Ebert