| Jul 13, 2006

Feature Article - July 13, 2006

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Feature Article - July 13, 2006

Ball Outdoor Sales reborn as LD Powersports

by Jeff Green

Lloyd Lee and Doug Brown have had a long five months.

In February the two men found that they were second in the line up of creditors when Ball Outdoor Sales, the company they ran together for 12 years before selling it in 2004, was going bankrupt. There were barely enough assets to pay off the number one creditor, the Bank of Montreal. Lloyd and Doug came to a short term agreement with the bank to act as trustees in order to try and salvage what they could and maintain a Powersport dealership and service business in Godfrey.


After five months of hard work, it seems they have done just that. A little over a week ago, L.D. Powerports became a registered company (it will take a while for a new sign to go up in front of the store). Lloyd and Doug have negotiated agreements with all of their historic suppliers, such as Lund Boats and Husquvarna and Stihl chainsaws. An agreement with Arctic Cat is almost completed, and by the end of July when the 2007 Arctic Cat line is formally introduced, there will be new Arctic Cats available at L. and D. Powersports.

Lloyd and Doug were looking a little tired at the store when interviewed by the News this week. They have worked hard to restart the business that they built over 12 years.

“The money that we were owed is lost,” Doug said with a resigned smile, “but we have cleared a lot of bureaucratic hurdles and are moving forward.”

“We couldn’t have made it this far,” said Lloyd Lee, “without the support of the community. From the start, people kept calling and saying how they wanted us to carry on, how important this business is for the area.”

Although several employees had to be laid off, the remaining staff were rock solid in staying with the business, according to Lloyd Lee.

“We guaranteed them their wages,” said Lee, “but we couldn’t guarantee them their jobs because we didn’t know what was going to happen. But they stuck with us, and without them we couldn’t have continued.”

The business never closed, although hours have been scaled back somewhat. It is open from 8-5 Monday to Friday, and 8-12 on Saturday.

Other local retailers have also been very helpful.

“When we couldn’t buy product from wholesalers because we no longer had agreements in place, Canadian Small Engines, Ward’s Marine, Loughborough Lake Marina , all came through for us, and Nowell Motors supplied us with Arctic Cat parts.” said Doug Brown.

The two men opened up an outdoor wood furnace business last year, The Furnace Broker, which has been run out of Verona . Now that they are both back working in Godfrey, The Furnace Broker has been moved to the L. and D. Powersports location as well.

For anyone in the market for a boat, a snowmobile, an ATV or a chainsaw, or for small engine repairs, L. and D. Powersports promises to provide a variety of service for many years to come.

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