European Retailer Delivers Winning Bid, Company Donates Proceeds to Fallen Firefighters
November 8, 2011 — Thirty-four years in the making, Watkins Manufacturing has earned the reputation as the global leader in the hot tub industry. Last month the company proudly announced the significant milestone of producing its 1,000,000th spa. To mark the occasion, Watkins recognized its employees' significant and ongoing commitment to excellence with celebrations at its manufacturing plants in California and Mexico.
On behalf of employees and spa retailers across the Watkins family of brands, the company also pledged to make a donation to an important charity, the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation. Noting that the millionth commemorative spa was a HotSpring Spa, and to broaden the reach of the corporate donation, Watkins held an online auction among HotSpring Spas retailers worldwide for the right to own the 1 millionth tub. The company also pledged to match 100 percent of the dealer's winning bid, doubling the charitable donation.
As a result of the competitive bidding that took place during the exciting week of the auction, Bruno Woodtli owner of Hewoo AG, a HotSpring Spas dealership in Switzerland, won the One Millionth Spa – an 'Aria' model – with a final bid of $17,200. As planned, Watkins Manufacturing is matching the winning bid, providing a total donation amount $34,400 to support the families of fallen firefighters across the United States.
"We would like to extend a special thank you to Hewoo AG, and to all the dealers nationally and worldwide who rallied to the call and participated in the auction–we sincerely appreciate such generous support," said Steve Hammock, president of Watkins Manufacturing. "We look forward to partnering with our retailers in the future to continue the good work of donating to causes like the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation."
"This generous gift from Watkins Manufacturing will help support the Foundation's mission to provide services and assistance to the families of firefighters who died in the line of duty," said Ronald J. Siarnicki, executive director of the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation. "We recently honored 89 fallen firefighters, including four from California, at the National Fallen Firefighters Memorial and we appreciate Watkins Manufacturing's commitment to our efforts."
A Masco company since 1986, Watkins has continually built momentum as the industry's top spa manufacturer for more than 30 years. Watkins Manufacturing's workforce is strong and experienced. They have won numerous awards for Workplace Excellence, and average employee tenure exceeds ten years. All Watkins products have a common element; they are built based on the company's fundamental mission to produce quality spas that are superior to the host of others on the market.
About Watkins Manufacturing Corporation
Watkins Manufacturing was established in 1977, in Vista, California. They are the world's largest manufacturer of hot tubs, including HotSpring® Spas, Limelight® Hot Tubs, Hot Spot® Spas and Caldera® Spas. The Watkins Dealer network extends into all 50 states and over 60 countries. Watkins is a division of Masco Corporation, a Fortune 500 company whose products include Delta® Faucets, KraftMaid® Cabinets, and Behr®paint.
"We would like to extend a special thank you to Hewoo AG, and to all the dealers nationally and worldwide who rallied to the call and participated in the auction–we sincerely appreciate such generous support," said Steve Hammock, president of Watkins Manufacturing."
Pictured right to left: Mike Dunn, Executive VP, Watkins; Steve Hammock, President, Watkins; Roger Lamberson, VP, Operations, Watkins; Chris Peavey, VP, Finance, Watkins; Matt Kennedy, Engineer, Vista Fire Dept.; Mark Standifird, Captain, Vista Fire Dept.; Mike Romeo, Firefighter, Vista Fire Dept.; Wanda Gilbert, Rep for NFFF; Leo Hamacher, VP, Int'l Sales & Mktg, Watkins; Mark Bettner, Director, Customer Service, Watkins; Harry Sundblad, VP, Corp. Bus Dev, Watkins; Ryan Sessler, VP, Sales & Mktg, Watkins; Robin French, VP, Engineering, Watkins