Business Profile | David MacNeil

December 2013/January 2014 View more

President and CEO of MacNeil Automotive Products Ltd.


Photo courtesy of MacNeil Automotive Products Ltd.


Company: MacNeil Automotive Products, Ltd.
Type of Business: Automotive products and accessories
Corporate Headquarters and Showroom: Bolingbrook, IL
Founded: 1989
Company Size: 200 – 500 employees (Privately Held)

As the weather in Naperville turns colder, the roads turn sloppy with rain, snow and mud. For one Bolingbrook-based automotive products company, the messy weather means big business for its popular product line of floor mats and mud flaps. David MacNeil is President and CEO of MacNeil Automotive Products Ltd., known for its WeatherTech floor mats. Naperville Magazine recently spoke with MacNeil about his company’s success and how he has managed to maintain his strong made in America promise.

As President and CEO of MacNeil Automotive Products Ltd., cars seem to be an integral part of your life. You even have a small collection of air cooled porsche’s. What is the driving force behind your seemingly endless passion for automobiles?

Automobiles represent art, style, technology and freedom to me. What’s not to like about any of those? I also usually have a prime piece from my car collection for people to see at the WeatherTech Factory Store and showroom in Bolingbrook. Right now, there is a very special older model BMW on display in the showroom for people to enjoy.

WeatherTech has become an enormously popular product line featuring car floor mats, floor liners, cargo/trunk liners, side-window deflectors, license plate frames and mud flaps. What inspired your idea to create this product line?

I’m inspired by making products that actually function properly, provide a benefit to the customer, offer fair value from a price-benefit point of view, and are the best in their product category. My inspiration came from my own needs as a car owner and father of three kids. I NEED my stuff in my car!

Within the past five years, you have built more than 400,000 square feet of factory and warehouse space in Downers Grove and Bolingbrook. What attracted you to the Western suburbs to build your operation?

I have lived in the West or Southwest suburbs all my life. The Chicago area is full of great people and hiring them is a pleasure and an honor as they usually have a great work ethic. Furthermore, I grew up in the Western suburbs, which is where I still live. Why not work close to home?

While many manufacturing companies are outsourcing their production overseas, especially to Asia, to cut costs and increase profit margins, you proudly make everything in America. What is your secret to success?

The secret to my success in America is combining the great American worker with modern American technology. Saving a couple of bucks to buy the product overseas is very shortsighted.

By outsourcing, they may be cutting costs to themselves, but by supporting the outsourcing of American manufacturing, the cost to the American economy is enormous. From my point of view, the combination of the hard working American worker combined with American technology allows us to be competitive in almost every manufacturing arena.

What started out as a business in your home has turned into a production company supplying international markets. Your company has seen double-digit growth for the past decade. What has been your proudest accomplishment so far?

My proudest accomplishment has been my daughter getting into Stanford University all by herself.

If you were not busy running a successful automotive products company, what would you rather be doing with your spare time?

Helping to create a better standard of living for my fellow Americans. Building homes, cities, schools, jobs, lives, hope, freedom and a bright future for my fellow Americans.