STURTEVANT, WI: Bombardier Recreational Products, which designs, develops, builds, distributes, and markets utility vehicles and engines, has elevated David Thompson to the new position of director, PR and competition.
Thompson had been handling PR for Bombardier's marine engine brands, Johnson and Evinrude.
Last year, he oversaw a PR campaign that countered rumors about the possible demise of those brands, keeping engine dealers loyal as Bombardier went through a change of its ownership.
The company's decision to create a new communications position demonstrates that Bombardier now recognizes the value of PR in its marketing mix, Thompson said.
"PR has been somewhat behind here. As a discipline, it has not been that much of a focus for the company in the past," he explained. "My job is going to be to bring Bombardier branding across the products we offer."
While the company has worked with such agencies as Publicis Dialog and JMPR in the past, it doesn't have an agency of record. Thompson plans to review the company use of outside agencies.
His new post will include some public affairs work. The "competition" part of his title relates to the PR he'll be doing for racing events involving Bombardier products, such as snowmobiles.
Thompson will report to Chris Dawson, the firm's VP of North American marketing.
Bombardier also named Marc Lacroix as its PR manager for Canada. He will coordinate efforts with Thompson and also will report to Dawson.