Motorhome manufacturer Winnebago Industries Inc. reports record sales and earnings for its fourth fiscal quarter and fiscal year 2002, both of which ended on Aug. 31.
The Forest City, Iowa-based company’s fourth fiscal quarter net earnings increased 6% to $16.4 million and its full fiscal year 2002 net profit soared 28% to $54.7 million.
Winnebago’s sales revenue increased 25% during the June-through-August period to $220.9 million and, for the 12 months ended Aug. 31, its sales climbed 23% to $828.4 million.
“We believe this growth is a result of low interest rates, the continued acceptance of our new products, the solid performance of our dealer partners, our brand awareness and high-quality reputation,” said Bruce Hertzke, chairman, president and CEO. “I’d also like to recognize our employees’ efforts for working overtime since January 2002 to meet increased demand.”
As he has stated on many occasions, Hertzke believes the aging of the Baby-Boom generation will fuel the RV industry’s growth, so Winnebago will increase its production capacity to satisfy the demand.
“Work is proceeding on the new manufacturing plant that is being built in Charles City, Iowa,” he said. “Motorhome production in the new facility is anticipated to begin by early 2003 with a ramp-up of production throughout the remainder of the fiscal year (2003).”
Hertzke also announced that Winnebago has completed its contract with Volkswagen of America to build the EuroVan Camper Class B motorhome, so it will phase out EuroVan Camper production. The phase-out will allow Winnebago to shift EuroVan Camper assembly line workers to its other Class A and Class C motorhome production operations, he said.
“Although production is complete, a limited number of EuroVan Campers will be sold in the first quarter of fiscal 2003,” Hertzke added.
Here is some of the other information that Hertzke revealed today (Oct. 9):
• Winnebago continues to be the retail market share leader in the combined Class A and Class C category, according to Statistical Surveys Inc., an independent market research firm. Winnebago had a 21.1% market share in Class A’s and C’s during the first seven months of this year, while No. 2 Fleetwood Enterprises Inc. had 17.4%. In Class C’s alone, Winnebago was No. 1 with a 26.5% market share, while in Class A’s alone, Fleetwood was No. 1 at 20.4% and Winnebago was No. 2 at 18.7%.
• Winnebago’s retail market share is growing, according to Statistical Surveys data, as indicated by the fact its share of the combined Class A and Class C market was 18.8% during the first seven months of 2001 and its market share was 15.8% in 1997, the year that Winnebago started to gain on its competitors.
• Winnebago’s shipments of Class A’s increased 15% during the June-through-August period to 1,783 units, compared with 1,553 units delivered to dealers during the same portion of 2001. Included were 369 diesel-engine units shipped during the three months ended Aug. 31, a 23% increase over the 299 diesel units delivered during the same period a year earlier.
• During the year ended Aug. 31, Winnebago’s Class A shipments increased 19% to 6,725 units, compared with 5,666 units delivered during fiscal year 2001. Included were 1,667 diesel units, a 22% increase over the 1,367 diesel pushers delivered during the 12 months ended Aug. 31, 2001.
• Winnebago’s Class C shipments soared 38% higher during the June-through-August period to 1,151 units, compared with 835 units delivered during the same period a year earlier. During the year ended Aug. 31, the company’s Class C deliveries increased 27% to 4,329 units, compared with 3,410 units delivered a year earlier.
• EuroVan Camper deliveries declined 38% during Winnebago’s fourth fiscal quarter to 181 units, although its EuroVan Camper deliveries during fiscal year 2002 increased 14% to 763 units.
• Winnebago’s order backlog as of Aug. 31 was 3,248 units, a 103% increase over its backlog of 1,598 units as of Aug. 31, 2001.