About RL Equipment

 

1970 was the year Raymond Brouillette and his brother Jacques signed a contract with John Deere to sell agricultural equipment at their highway 64 lumber yard location. The store was then known as “Brouillette Bros.” In 1972, Ray and Jacques dissolved their partnership; Ray kept the John Deere equipment part of the business and Jacques, the building store. Raymond purchased the present property on corner Cartier Street and Highway 17 in 1973 from Aurel and Bernadette Beaudry, a Massey Ferguson dealership at the time. That location had been retailing John Deere equipment by the Brouzes brothers some years before (1950s). Raymond along with a couple of employees opened his new agricultural equipment sales + service store under the name “Verner Equipment”. For years the store served the agricultural community with sales of John Deere and other short lines of equipment, Shur-Gain animal feed and Gulf petroleum products.

 

The company was incorporated in 1975 as RL Equipment Sales and Services Ltd. “R” for Raymond and “L” for Lorraine his spouse. The business was growing and needed a different line to diversify. In 1978, Ray signed a contract with Yamaha and sold snowmobiles and motorcycles for a couple of years and later let the line go. But in 1982, the craze for ATVs started and John Deere was in it’s last production year for snowmobiles. The company signed up with Yamaha again, and started selling their three wheelers and snowmobiles. Although the store had been selling John Deere snowmobiles since the early 70’s, this is when the store really took on a recreational angle.

Things were progressing and the store needed more showroom for all of its products. In 1987, the store seen its first addition to the front section of the building which is facing Cartier St. A pre-engineered building section was attached. The following year, the older part of the building was covered with a pitch roof and the building totally re-cladded.

Artic Cat snowmobiles and watercrafts came in the picture for a short while starting fall 1993. But after a few seasons, Arctic Cat’s policies and direction didn’t fit R.L. Equipment’s customer service direction. Products were not reordered after the 95/96 winter season.

By then, the company was very diversified and well known for its good customer service, bilingual staff and aggressiveness on the marketplace.

In September 1994, Yves Brouillette, son of Raymond & Lorraine purchased the company. By fall 1995, RL Equipment had opened a second location in North Bay, selling only Yamaha recreational and John Deere consumer products. For a young aggressive business person, building and opening another location was a challenge and excellent experience.

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But after seventeen months of operating two stores splitting it’s staff in two and many hours of hard work by everyone to keep up, things were going too fast and as a result customer service was suffering. It was then decided to close the North Bay location in March 1997, to get everyone back ‘home’ under one roof.

With good service in mind, the company always looked for ways to improve service by training, getting the right tools and changing with the times to become a leader in the industry. The company was given Yamaha Gold Dealer awards in 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001 and 2002 and has qualified as a Yamaha Five Star dealer since 2003. The dealership also received Circle of Excellence awards from John Deere for its sales and service achievements.

The economy around the area had been constantly changing and the needs of the customers and company were changing. In spring 2001, RL took on the full line of Honda products to compliment its recreational line. At the same time, the company discontinued selling agricultural equipment while keeping the full line of John Deere consumer products (lawn and grounds care) and commercial equipment (compact diesel and utility tractors 20 to 75 horsepower).

Now focused on Yamaha, John Deere and Honda as premium brands of choice, RL has the experience, staff and manufacturer support to offer the quality service to its customers.

Fall 2001 and winter 2002 brought the location it’s second addition to the main building. With a need for more showroom for parts, accessories and units, another pre-engineered building section was attached. The store we know today now has dedicated accessory merchandising areas, and apparel section, unit showroom, delivery room, repair shop and two storage buildings.

In the fall of 2005, the company added another pre-engineered building to be used as boat showroom and showcase additional new and used units. At the same time, the rear yard was paved to better serve our motorcycle customers and keep the area clean. A new loading ramp was built to allow our forklift to drive right into incoming trailers and provide good loading/unloading area for our customers.

Summer 2007 saw another addition to our parts room to store more parts, especially larger pieces and tires. In early 2008, all departments converted over to our new Lightspeed business software, answering the need for more modern computer software for the future. The service shop added a second tire mounting machine and new balancing machine dedicated to motorcycle tires. Now equipped with the latest software from all three manufacturers and a dedicated service shop laptop, the service staff continually invests time in training to offer the latest the new OEM technologies have to offer in diagnostic and performance tools. Continually changing and leading the way to new products and technologies, RL Equipment is always an exciting yet relaxing place to visit. With their new website, you can keep in touch of what’s happening and be part of their Recreational Lifestyle (RL) offerings and events. Constantly changing, RL’s location is an exciting place to visit.

A customer focused company with fifteen staff members offering bilingual service, all eager to serve the customer well. Customer service is very important and everything happens in a friendly, clean, relaxed yet exciting store.

We accept VISA, MaterCard, Interac, and Yamaha card. We also offer in-house financing at competitive rates with as little as 0.00 down on approved credit with Yamaha Financial Services, Honda Finance, John Deere Credit, and other banks and financial institutions.
Skeeter Yamaha Honda John Deere G3 Boats Stanley Boats