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Clyde Fessler Arizona / Colorado

Clyde Fessler is widely recognized as the brand architect in the dramatic turnaround of the Harley-Davidson Motor Company. His powerful presentations demonstrate the genuine passion surrounding the much-admired Harley brand, the experience of motorcycling and the attributes of freedom, adventure and individuality.

Fessler served in key executive positions at Harley-Davidson for 25 years, playing an integral role in the evolution of the company into a global community-building lifestyle brand with an extraordinarily loyal following. His dynamic presentation relates the Harley-Davidson turnaround story, detailing how the brand developed its own mystique by bringing together seemingly disparate combinations of products, people, processes and experiences in unique and often surprising ways. It is a story that resonates with business audiences across a wide range of demographic segments. Fessler joined Harley-Davidson in 1977 as Advertising and Promotions Manager and was soon promoted to Director of Marketing. In that position, Fessler led the establishment of the Harley Owners Group, or H.O. G., which remains the largest sponsored enthusiast clubbing the world with more than one million members.

As General Sales Manager, Fessler established new dealer incentives, policies and programs - many of which are still in effect today. As Director of Licensing, he propagated the Harley brand across a wide variety of third-party merchandise which added over $200 million in annual revenue. As Vice President of General Merchandise, Fessler built the Motor Clothes line from $20 million in annual sales to over $100 million over a period of five years. As Vice President of Motor Accessories, he developed the strategy that doubled Harley's accessory business in three years and tripled it in five.

In his final role, as Vice President of Business Development, Fessler helped refine the strategic direction of the company, creating the global rental program and the Rider's Edge safety training program. He was also involved in the 2-1 program to develop a tilting 3-wheeler. Fessler is the author of the 2012 book Rebuilding the Brand: How Harley-Davidson Became King of the Road.

He is a graduate of the University of Notre Dame and has served on the Board of Trustees of the American Motorcycle Association and the Motorcycle Safety Foundation. Fessler also played a key role in Harley-Davidson's relationship with the Muscular Dystrophy Association, which has generated over $70 million in donations as the primary charity of H.O.G.

When he is not busy sharing his vision, creativity and strategic thinking with clients and audiences, Clyde can be found exploring the world on one of his five Harley-Davidson motorcycles.

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Each presentation is customized to meet the needs and objectives of the host organization and to ensure that it resonates with the audience. Business meeting themes and key messages can be integrated into each presentation.
  • Rebuilding the Brand: How Harley-Davidson Became King of the Road - What happens when a company's brand needs more than a face-lift? Author Clyde Fessler, former Harley-Davidson vice president of marketing and business development, takes you along for a ride through a complete brand overhaul. By examining the core principles of brand identity, development, and extension Fessler shows how these ideas and others helped reestablish Harley as one of the most enduring and identifiable brands in the world.

  • The Harley-Davidson Turnaround Story - The Harley-Davidson Turnaround Story is the story of how the last remaining motorcycle manufacturer in the U.S. competed against global giants like Honda, Suzuki, Kawasaki, and Yamaha in the marketplace. On the verge of bankruptcy in the early 1980's, Harley-Davidson found itself facing sever market conditions and heavy foreign competition. Enter Clyde Fessler and a team of creative hands-on people that, through applying unique strategies, clever positioning, hard work and passion, turned the last remaining American motorcycle manufacturer from the rust bowl of the Midwest into a Fortune 500 company success story. Clyde's presentation captures the Harley-Davidson turnaround story and adds mystique...the ability of the brand to bring together (in unique and surprising) ways seemingly disparate combinations of products, people, processes, and experiences.
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Rebuilding the Brand
Rebuilding the Brand: How Harley-Davidson Became King of the Road

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