Helmut’s Marine Service of San Rafael, Calif., is celebrating its 25th year of business as a Volvo Penta dealer this month.
“We congratulate the superb team at Helmut’s for their successful achievement of a quarter-century of business,” Volvo Penta Region Americas president Ron Huibers said in a statement. “As our power center in California, Helmut’s has established an unmatched reputation as an industry leader and has played a vital role in Volvo Penta’s success on the West Coast over the years.”
Helmut’s Marine Service was founded in March 1988 by Helmut Ahollinger and Lieselotte (Lisa) Ahollinger-George as a Volvo Penta dealership serving the San Francisco area. Five years later, the company moved to its current waterfront location on the San Rafael canal. It became a Volvo Penta power center under a pilot program in 1999.
Today, Helmut’s Marine Service has grown to include eight docks, a Travelift, two warehouses for engines and parts, workshop and offices, with a 14-person work force, including a service team of five. As a power center, the company provides engines, parts and technical support to dealers in California, Utah, Nevada, Arizona, New Mexico, Hawaii and Guam. Helmut’s also directly services recreational and commercial vessels in the San Francisco area.
“We pride ourselves on always going the extra mile,” president Helmut Ahollinger said in a statement. “Our guiding principle is always to treat our customer as we would treat our best friend.”
“One of the keys to our success is maintaining a comprehensive inventory, enabling us to deliver Volvo Penta engines and parts to our dealers and commercial customers when and where they need them,” Ahollinger added.
Helmut’s business is about 60 percent leisure marine and 40 percent commercial marine. Engine sales are about 80 percent diesel and 20 percent gas-powered.