Aurora Casket Company
Innovation in the funeral industry
Aurora Casket Company bills itself as the number one online resource for caskets. Headquartered in Aurora , Indiana , they are the largest privately owned casket manufacturer and distributor in the USA . The company makes quality name-brand caskets, but when it comes right down to it they don't make truly discount caskets. Aside from caskets, the company also provides cremation services, memorial products and other funerary merchandise.
Aurora 's Innovations and Achievements
Aurora Casket Company often finds itself leading in innovative products and ideas within the funeral industry. Some of these achievements include:
- Positive Choices is a public service aimed at preventing impaired driving tragedies through education and interaction with youth (including scholarships and other programs). It's a Hometown Marketing™ program from Aurora .
- Aurora also provides a web-hosting program to make it easier for funeral homes to go online. Aurora sites feature The Family Advisor, which is owned and operated by Aurora . You should remember that these types of sites are provided by the funeral industry itself, so the information may be biased. It's not likely to represent the concerns of consumers on the various aspects of planning a funeral.
- In 2004, the Aurora Casket Company was recognized as one of the 50 fastest growing companies in the Cincinnati tri-state area, by the Cincinnati Business Courier. The award honors Aurora for its growth in revenue of over 25 percent, from 2001 to 2004.
- Aurora is proud of its leadership in the personalization of caskets and other funeral products. Aurora caskets can be personalized to honor everyone from war veterans and sports enthusiasts to environmentalists and patriots of other nations.
Tradition and Family
The Aurora Casket Company was founded in 1890 by Colonel John J. Backman, who originally established the Aurora Coffin Company, which originally employed about 30 people making wood caskets by hand. Today, it's nationally known as a funeral service innovator with over 850 employees. The company has remained in the Backman family, run (as of 2005) by Bill Backman III; Colonel Backman's great grandson.
The company tries to maintain a close relationship with its customers, most of whom are family-owned funeral homes. Aurora prides itself on maintaining a lean business model; they keep their own costs very slim, in order to maximize their profit margin. For the consumer, this means that you get a reputable company with lower casket costs than some competitors.
Aurora , the Funeral Industry and its Critics
Although highly esteemed in the industry, The Aurora Casket Company has been involved in some legal difficulties, which you might want to keep in mind when looking at casket options. Aurora was named in a May, 2005 lawsuit by Ralph Lee Fancher, along with many other big names in the funeral industry, such as Service Corporation International, Alderwoods Group, Inc., the Batesville Casket Company, York and many others. The suit alleges that leaders in the funeral industry breach federal anti-trust laws; however, as of summer 2005, the suit is still pending.