Yakima, a supplier of vehicle racks for boats, bikes, camping and winter sports gear, has named The Hitch Company, and Norco as its two new Canadian distributors. The announcement is effectively immediately with the transition scheduled for completion September 1, 2010. Hitchco, which currently sells to aftermarket hitch installers, will handle dealerships in the automotive channel, hitch installers and other aftermarket customers (e.g. truck caps and tonneau covers, etc.) in the auto installer channel. Norco, Canada’s leading parts and accessories distributor with its own bike line, will handle independent bike dealers (IBD), the rack specialty category and the outdoor specialty channel including paddle sports and general outdoor gear. Current customers will be matched with the distributor that is aligned with their primary sales channel. Each customer will be notified by both Yakima and its new distributor as to the new point of contact. Each distributor will be stocked with complete inventory and will be fully functioning by September 1. Both distributors will support their partnerships with Yakima through sales and product training, marketing support, direct mail, trade show representation and integrated customer service. Both distributors will present uniform pricing of Yakima products in all channels. “A dual distributor model in Canada enables Yakima to focus on our product delivery model and boost service making it easier on our customers,” said Ron Ten Berge, vice president of sales and business development at Yakima. “Our Canadian customers across the country will immediately reap the benefits of shorter shipping times, increased rep visibility in stores and enhanced customer support. We are looking forward to working side by side with Hitchco and Norco, both of whom have proven track records and the respect of the industries they serve.” “Yakima and Norco Products Ltd. are driven by similar values: commitment to our team, providing unsurpassed customer service and designing and building innovative product,” said Skip Swain, Norco Products Ltd.’s vice president of sales. “It is because of our shared values that we are so optimistic in moving forward with Yakima. Our team is extremely excited about this partnership and the opportunity to supply the IBD’s, rack specialty retailers and the outdoor channel the best rack line in the world today,” added Swain.