Fleetwood Enterprises Inc. reports its RV sales revenue increased 32% during the third quarter of its fiscal year 2004, which ended last Sunday (Jan. 25).
However, despite higher RV sales and improvements in its manufactured housing business, Fleetwood will report a net loss for the November-through-January period, although the amount will be significantly less than it was a year earlier, said Ed Caudill, president and CEO.
Fleetwood will report a loss for the three months ended Jan. 25 because that is the slowest time of the year for the RV and manufactured housing industries, but Caudill added that “shortages of several key components caused production delays throughout the RV Group.”
Caudill, most likely, was referring to the RV oven shortage, which has forced many manufacturers to delay shipments of finished units until the ovens arrive.
The natural gas oven shortage has also led many manufacturers to adjust their assembly processes to install microwave ovens as a substitute.
Concerning Fleetwood’s third fiscal quarter, RV sales revenue totaled $409 million for the November-through-January period, compared with $310 million a year earlier.
Its motorhome sales increased 28% during the period to $272 million and its travel trailer/fifth-wheel revenue soared 61% higher to $114 million. However, Fleetwood’s folding camper revenue declined 13% to $23 million.
“Enhancing product development and dealer relationships along with the positive industry growth” explained Fleetwood’s higher motorhome and travel trailer/fifth-wheel revenue totals, Caudill said.
“We believe the positive momentum we have established in revenue and market share will show up on the bottom line in the near future,” Caudill continued. “Motorhome operating margins have shown steady improvement and are nearing satisfactory levels, while at the same time, we continue to focus on generating improvement in travel trailer margins. We are also optimistic that as consumer confidence rises, folding trailer sales will break their recent trend of declining sales.”
During the nine months ended Jan. 25, Fleetwood’s total RV sales increased 20% to $1.3 billion. Motorhome sales increased 19% during the period to $803 million and travel trailer/fifth-wheel revenue grew by 34% to $416 million. However, folding camper sales declined 19% to $77 million.