Aurora Says Casket Business Far From Dead

September 27, 2010
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imageBill ?Bax? Backman is the son of a son of a casket maker who founded Aurora Casket Co. 120 years ago. He followed in his father?s footsteps as president of the company, which is still family-owned, and has seen tremendous changes in the past 35 years. ?We are literally reinventing ourselves on a daily basis to stay ahead of the trends,? he said.

One big change is the increased preference for cremation over traditional burials. That?s a trend Aurora has embraced as a way to continually improve its service to family-owned funeral homes, he said. It now makes a separate line of products, from caskets to urns, specifically for cremations. The bulk of Aurora?s caskets are made in the United States.

Why do you have the career you have?

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My great-grandfather founded our company 120 years ago. I feel honored to be a fourth-generation president of our family-owned business.

What?s the biggest issue facing the casket industry these days?

Just like any other business, the casket industry is ever-changing. The economic uncertainty has created challenges for our company, but there have also been great growth opportunities that we?ve been able to capitalize on. Because we?ve been able to adjust quickly, we are moving forward profitably as the largest privately owned casket company in the country.

What is the most difficult aspect of your job?

Our customers? needs are always changing, and assessing our strategy to ensure that we stay attuned to these needs is a daily challenge. Finding the time to reflect on past, present and future business practices can be difficult.

Source: Cincinnati Biz Journal

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