Fleet Response Purchased by Founder's Son
(l. to r.) Ron Mawaka, Jr. , Claude Nolty, Ron Mawaka Sr., Myron Zadony, Scott Mawaka.
Scott Mawaka has acquired Cleveland-based Fleet Response from his father and other investors, so the company can remain a privately-held family-run business.
Mawaka, the president and CEO, acquired shares from Ron Mawaka, Jr., Myron Zadony, and Claude Nolty for an undisclosed amount. Ron Mawaka, the majority shareholder, started the company in 1986.
In February 2016, Fleet Response celebrated its 30th anniversary with more than 120 employees.
"This is a great milestone for Fleet Response, and I could not be happier for Scott and Fleet Response," said Ron Mawaka Sr. "I personally want to thank all of our partners over the past 30 years for helping us get to this day."
In a letter to employees, Ron Mawaka praised his son's work ethic, and said "his energy and great leadership has helped build the team we have in place today."
Scott Mawaka will also serve as the company's chairman, and there will be no immediate management changes, according to the letter.
"It’s an honor to carry on the strong foundation that my father built with Myron and Claude," Mawaka said. "As our business grows, I am committed to operating on our founding principle of innovation with a culture that focuses on employee and customer satisfaction."
Fleet Response uses a consultative approach with its fleet clients though a client engagement program that focuses on new ways to deliver data and suggest process improvement.
The company maintains a client advisory board that meets regularly to review current product offerings, system enhancements, and propose programs to help fleet, safety and risk managers.
Fleet Response has also been named a top workplace by the Cleveland Plain Dealer for the way it treats employees. The company offers monthly healthy lunches, a wellness program, Weight Watchers support groups, Fitbits and PTO days. The Ron & Fran Mawaka Employee of the Year award gives $5,000 to the employee that most exemplifies the company's core values.
"We value our employees and look for ways to show that appreciation," said Allison Lanzilotta, executive vice president. "It’s much easier for employees to provide a positive experience for drivers and our clients if the employees are in a positive atmosphere."
Scott Mawaka joined Fleet Response in 1989 as a sales executive, when the company —then known as Rental Concepts, Inc. (RCI) — supplied rental vehicles to fleet managers after employee accidents. RCI expanded its service offerings in the 1990s to include accident management and maintenance services under the company name Integrated Vehicle Systems, Inc. (IVS). The two entities were combined in 2003 to become Fleet Response and operated with the support of Zadony and Nolty.