Mark Warner, Vice President and General Manager
A native of Boise, Motive Power VP and General Manager Mark Warner has lived in other parts of the country, but chose to move back to the Boise Valley when the opportunity presented itself.
“I find the lifestyle here very attractive. I like the outdoors. I like the fact that we have 220 sunny days a year. I like to snow ski. I work in a corporation with 6,000 employees. They visit here all the time. The common theme when they visit is, ‘What a great place to live,’” he says.
Motive Power is an industry leader in the design, manufacture and remanufacture of diesel-electric locomotives. The company began as a spin-off of another Boise Valley success story, Morrison-Knudsen, once the largest construction engineering firm in the world.
Since 1972, the company has delivered more than 2,500 locomotives from its 300,000 square-foot Boise facility, making it the largest supplier of passenger locomotives in North America. Next year the company is projecting record sales, and expects to double its sales in the next five years.
The reason for Motive Power’s success? Warner cites the lifestyle offered by the Boise Valley, which makes it easy to attract new talent, as well as the low cost of doing business in the state.
“Our location is important. We have attracted some very good talent at the higher levels—engineering expertise from throughout the country. Two of our staff-level employees are from Boeing, one from the east coast from Mack Truck. We just hired a sales executive out of Singapore," he says.
“Whenever we’ve brought people out here to interview them, and they have a chance to look around, they’re immediately enticed by the area. It makes recruiting new talent easy."
On the low cost of doing business here:
“We compete with many firms on the east coast and in the Midwest, and we’ve found ourselves to be extremely competitive. The Boise Valley’s low energy costs, low insurance costs, competitive wage rates, and the general atmosphere of cooperation from government leaders have all contributed positively to our growth and bottom line.”
On the valley’s business climate:
“There’s a culture of success here that stems back from these big corporate headquarters that were founded in this area—Morrison-Knudsen, Albertsons, Simplot, Micron. There’s a feeling of success, a very cooperative atmosphere. I know if I called up the mayor and asked for his help, he would listen to me and do the best he could.”
On the local workforce:
“You can rely on the folks that you would hire locally to help in the success of your company. Our experience here is that the people here are very reliable and hardworking. We have very low turnover. They really care about the work they do and we’re able to find most of them from within the area.”
To learn more about manufacturing in the Boise Valley, click here.