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Vapor Power and Laborde Products Announce New Partnership - 10/14/2013 -

Vapor Power and Laborde Products made an announcement of a new relationship between the two companies at the 2013 Work Boat Show on Wednesday, October 9th at 3:00 PM. In attendance at the joint announcement was Bob Forslund, President of Vapor Power International, Marc Dupuis Sales Manager of Vapor Power, and from Laborde Products, Tracy Laborde, Chairman/CEO, Brian Laborde, President, Doug Oehrlein, VP Sales & Marketing, Chris Cerullo, Marine Manager and David DiSalvo who heads up the companies Engineered Products Division.

Effective October 1, 2013 Laborde Products was selected as Vapor Power International Marine Distributor for the North American marine markets. "Our companies have tremendous synergies” stated Marc Dupuis and "We are excited about this new partnership with Laborde Products”. "The Vapor Power heaters really complement our growing position in the inland tank barge industry and gives us another arrow in our quiver when providing a turnkey package to our heated barge customers” indicated Doug Oehrlein.

Vapor was founded in 1903 as the Chicago Car Heating Company. Thermal fluid heaters were introduced by the company in the late 1950’s and by the 1970’s Va-Power, as it was known, became the leading supplier of cargo heaters to the marine industry. Va-Power’s lost its leading position in the inland marine market in the 1990’s; as a result of a series of ownership changes and different market focus.

In 2001, the current ownership purchased the Va-Power division and the new organization, Vapor Power International was formed with a strict focus on heating products. The company’s immediate goals were to convert what was an internally driven organization to a customer focused company, rebuilding the brand based on the features that made them market leaders in the 1970’s. The Vapor Power products afford customers with capital cost savings, construction cost savings, fuel cost savings, a compact design, faster heat up times and ease of operation. The decision to select Laborde as the Vapor Power Marine Distributor was the logical choice as Vapor Power understood they needed a strong partner within the marine market segment to reintroduce their brand.

Laborde Products, originally Star Power, was acquired in 1998 by the Laborde family and has quickly become the largest distributor of Mitsubishi Marine engines in North America. The company’s focus has been largely on the Inland Marine Industry. As an engine distributor, the company has developed a range of products targeting the inland marine and specifically the tank barge market. Laborde’s tank barge power units, which are powered by the only Tier 3 Marine Mechanical engines in the market provide Laborde the ability to provide power to their customers units that meet the USCG Class 1 Division 1 requirements without complex electronics. A host of issues associated with electronic engines and cost are avoid with the use of a simple, reliable Mitsubishi mechanical engine.

"Laborde is focused on providing our customers with the Right Product for their application and then making sure we provide them with the Right Service and Right Support to keep that product working. The Mitsubishi powered mechanical tank barge power units and the Vapor Power heaters are the Right Product for our heater barge customers and we are very excited about the new relationship with Vapor Power” stated Doug Oehrlein.

"Both Laborde and Vapor are focused on providing quality products for the tank barge industry and we at Laborde are confident that the new Vapor Power heating products are manufactured and designed to meet our customers highest expectations” said Chris Cerullo of Laborde. "We can now provide our customers with a complete stainless steel package including Generators, Barge Pump Package and Vapor Power heaters”

The new relationship also positions Laborde to provide the Vapor Power heater product support through the companies (3) branch offices and (17) marine dealers. "This is where the Right Service and Right Support comes into the formula that we have used to grow our business year after year” stated Brian Laborde.

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