Trade associate member update — Tradewinds Power Corp.

It’s all about solutions at FFVA trade associate member Tradewinds Power Corp.

Tradewinds Power Corp. is an original equipment manufacturer of diesel and natural gas generator sets, diesel power units and pump sets, marine generator sets and propulsion engines. Its products cover a wide range of kilowatts and horsepower, incorporate the latest technological features and comply with all local emission regulations.

Thirty-six years ago Tom Tracy Jr., father of the current owner of the same name, was lured away from a position with the Cummins Engine Co. by an offer to run his own business as a representative for Perkins Engines. The date was April 1, 1978.

“Everyone my father knew in the industry thought it was an April Fools’ joke because he was leaving a very established, stable organization and opening a branch office. Owning a business was a dream of his. He had a great vision, and that vision became a reality. And here we are all of these years later,” said Tom Tracy III.

“Dad passed away in 1996, and I took over in 1998,” Tracy added. “I made the decision to continue the business rather than sell it. It had a very good reputation, and I was raised to take on challenges and to complete things.”

Curt Missall, general manager of the Sebring branch, explains what Tradewinds Power Corp offers agricultural customers. “We offer diesel engines and gas engines, which are used as power units, as well as pumps for irrigation and drainage. We also sell generator sets to provide backup power. Qualified technicians are available to provide service work and install work. Tradewinds Power Corp. is a distributor for Perkins and John Deere, and our parts department carries an array of products including Donaldson Filters, Pioneer Pumps, Berkeley Pumps, some automation systems, control panels, and a wide variety of components or equipment,” Missall said.

The company’s successful history has taken some winding paths. It started out as South Florida Diesel, when Tracy’s father first took on the Perkins representation. “He called the company South Florida Diesel because it started in Miami. Later, when we were granted more territory, that opened up the northeast part of the state, [and] the name was changed to Southeast Diesel to reflect the fact that its territory included the eastern part of Florida,” Tracy said.

Eventually, the name was changed to Perkins Power Corp. At the time, Perkins was managed by Detroit Diesel, a relationship that lasted many years. Detroit Diesel then decided to cancel all of the Perkins distributorships except Tracy’s father’s location. “My dad found himself in a position of reduced margins, much more competition, and he was going against the local Detroit Diesel distributors. So in the early ‘90s he founded Tradewinds Power Corp. because he could not represent or sell any other product except Perkins,” Tracy said. “He was very limited in the scope of the business, the market share and the margins. He decided to create an offshoot company that was an OEM, which allowed him to represent other engine lines and products. He could do that and not affect the Perkins relationship. Of course, there had to be a separate facility. That is why we have the Sebring facility. Dad purchased the building and property with the idea of making it the Tradewinds headquarters. We still have the name Southeast Diesel Corp., but it’s a holding company of two subsidiaries:  Tradewinds Power Corp., which is based out of Miami and Sebring, and Perkins Power Corp., based out of Jacksonville,” Tracy said.

Curt Missall, general manager of the Sebring branch, explains what Tradewinds Power Corp offers agricultural customers. “We offer diesel engines and gas engines, which are used as power units, as well as pumps for irrigation and drainage. We also sell generator sets to provide backup power. Qualified technicians are available to provide service work and install work. Tradewinds Power Corp. is a distributor for Perkins and John Deere, and our parts department carries an array of products including Donaldson Filters, Pioneer Pumps, Berkeley Pumps, some automation systems, control panels, and a wide variety of components or equipment,” Missall said.

Customers are predominately located in Florida, but the company also covers the Southeast United States and has strong ties to Latin America through its Miami location.

“A take-home point of what we do is that we’re a solutions kind of company,” said Mike Waldron of the Sebring office. Regardless of what your challenge is as a farmer, Tradewinds has the appropriate people here, whether it’s designing something here at the shop or whether we’re meeting the challenges in the field for that customer. We are all about solving those problems. We have a very good relationship – we speak the language of the farmer, so they trust us. We have a good name, we have a quality product and even if you might pay a little more of a premium for working with Tradewinds, you get premium quality and service,” Waldron said.

Missall added, “One of the reasons we’ve been in business so long is we believe in long-term relationships. We’re a relationship company. We’re with you in good times and bad times.”

And from Tracy: “We specialize in customizing packages. There are a lot of companies in our business that try to sell you what they have as opposed to what their customer needs. We listen to the voice of the customer – we listen to what the market is looking for and we will build those packages. If someone is looking for solutions, we can provide those solutions for them.”

Learn more about Tradewinds Power Corp at tradewindspower.com or call the Sebring branch at 800-206-2224 or the Miami location at 800-223-3289.

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