Inside Darley March 2022

Hi, I’m Paul Darley, and thanks for tuning into our March issue of Inside Darley. FAMA, that’s the Fire Apparatus Manufacturers’ Association, just released their data relative to the number of new fire apparatus orders received in 2021. If you can imagine, the market was up over 40% to almost 6,000 vehicles sold in 2021. Now you have to be a FAMA member to get all of that data, but I will tell you that when we look back and we compare that to 2019 pre-pandemic numbers, the market is still up over 20%. The question that everyone’s asking is, “will that trend continue?” And in order to answer that our first attachment is the December issue of Fire Apparatus Magazine, where I and other folks in the industry give their projections. I’m projecting about a 10% adjustment in 2021.

We’re down at the FAMA annual meeting this week. It’ll be the first time that we’ve met in over two years. We’re proud to have Jason Darley serving on that board.

There are a lot of changes that have taken place. In fact, as you look at the slide of member companies in 1966, the fire apparatus builders listed there are in red. You probably won’t recognize many of those names as being available today. And even looking at this slide here from 1982, just 40 years ago, there were 30 fire apparatus manufacturers at that time. Only six of them are around today and that’s Alexis, E-One, Pierce, Seagrave, Sutphen and Darley, and there will probably be another shakeout.

You can’t open the newspaper or turn on the TV these days without reading about inflationary issues, supply chain issues or labor shortage issues. Our third attachment is actually an article put out by McKinsey that’s titled “Negotiating Supplier Price Increases in an Inflationary Market.” You might find some interesting things here, particularly for fire apparatus builders, as you look at the increase in commodities from steel, aluminum and different metals, as shown in this chart.

We’re very busy getting ready for the FDIC, that’s the Fire Department Instructors’ Conference. That’s going to take place down in Indianapolis. It’ll be held April 28th - 30th, and we’re going to be in the same location that we’ve been in over the last few years. That’s booth number #3558. We’ve even expanded our booth to almost 5,000 square feet. And that’s really to accommodate all of the new products. We’re going to share those new products with you in our April issue of Inside Darley. Hopefully you’ll come back and see us in a month. We’re also going to be having our VIP reception on Friday evening. If you’ve attended in the past, you’ll be getting one of those invitations. They’ll be going out in the next couple of weeks. If you don’t receive one, reach out to your local sales rep. We’ll make sure you’re invited.

Thanks for tuning into this issue of Inside Darley. If there’s anything we can be doing to assist you, we hope you’ll reach out to us. ​