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Old 10-26-2008, 01:17 PM   #1
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Planning to buy a new 42'DP next year. Does anyone have a sense as to the relative Class A sales volumes of the various manufacturers - American Coach, Country Coach, etc. Or can anyone to refer me to where I might pick up these data. With the current financial/economic/indusry turmoil, I'm concerned about the ability of the smaller folks to survive. Thanks....Hugh
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Old 10-26-2008, 01:17 PM   #2
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Planning to buy a new 42'DP next year. Does anyone have a sense as to the relative Class A sales volumes of the various manufacturers - American Coach, Country Coach, etc. Or can anyone to refer me to where I might pick up these data. With the current financial/economic/indusry turmoil, I'm concerned about the ability of the smaller folks to survive. Thanks....Hugh
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Old 10-26-2008, 05:57 PM   #3
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You are very wise to be concerned about some mfg's not staying in business. Several have folded in the past 2 years.

Concerning market share, this article is from 2006:

MOTOR HOMES RANK ORDER IN MARKET SHARE 2006
FOREST CITY, IOWA, March 12, 2007 For the sixth consecutive year, Winnebago Industries, Inc. (NYSE: WGO) has earned the top selling motor home manufacturer honor according to Statistical Surveys, Inc., a retail reporting service in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

For calendar 2006, Winnebago Industries dealers retailed more Class A and Class C motor homes combined than any other manufacturer's dealer group, achieving 19 percent market share.

This is an increase from 17.9 percent in calendar 2005. The gap between Winnebago Industries' market share and that of the next ranked manufacturer was also widened from .4 to 2.7 percentage points.

Winnebago Industries also once again earned top selling Class C manufacturer honors for calendar 2006, with 25.5 percent market share, up from 20.6 percent in calendar 2005. The next ranked manufacturer recorded
16.9 percent market share for the same period. The Winnebago Outlook (formerly Minnie) was again recognized as the top selling Class C model motor home for calendar 2006.

"Winnebago Industries' dealer network has proven once again that they are the best in the business by helping us achieve the top selling motor home manufacturer award for the sixth consecutive year," said Winnebago Industries' Vice President of Sales and Marketing Roger Martin. "We thank our dedicated employees and dealers for working hard to achieve the number one status again."

Comparing this article with the listing below tells you that things changed between 2000 and 2006:

MOTOR HOMES RANK ORDER IN MARKET SHARE 2000
1. Fleetwood Enterprises "FLE" 21.7%
2. Winnebago Ind. Inc. "WGO" 17.2%
3. Coachmen Ind. Inc. "COA" 11.6%
4. Monaco Coach Inc. "MNC" 10.1%
5. Thor Industries "THO" 8.8%
6. National RV "NVH" 5.2%
7. Gulfstream Coach "Private" 4.3%
8. Newmar Corp. "Private" 4.2%
9. Damon Corp. "Private" 3.5%
10.Tiffin Motor Home "Private" 2.7%

But market share alone doesn't tell the whole story ...#6 on the above list is one that folded recently. And #10 on the above list would be in my top three if I were buying a motorhome tomorrow. The other two would be Foretravel (not on the list at all), and Winnebago.
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Old 10-26-2008, 06:34 PM   #4
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High end motorcoach sales are holding up better than Class A's overall, but that doesn't mean the company will survive. American Coach, for example, is a division of Fleetwood, so if Fleetwood fails, AC is affected even though they are doing Ok on their own. The high end of Monaco/HR/Beaver/Safari, Newmar, Country Coach, etc. are similarly in jeopardy if the business as a whole cannot be sustained. Winnie/Itasca doesn't have any real high end brands, but they do have a much broader offering at the low end where they can eke out some sales even though times are tough.

The only company I know of that is doing real well in this soft market is Tiffin - they have hot products that are in demand despite the market. Since they are privately held, it is impossible to say if they are financially sound, though.
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Old 10-26-2008, 06:44 PM   #5
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Recent news said Country Coach is making 2.5 motorhomes a week. Last week Tiffin had another round of layoffs and they are now making 3-4 motorhomes a day and taking a week off now and then. Winnebago closed their Charles City plant and laid off 42% of the workers at Forest City. Winnebago has overbuilt and has over 3,600 new motorhomes sitting on dealers lots.

Who knows who will be the next to fold.
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Old 10-27-2008, 07:17 AM   #6
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High Hugh,
Consider Newmar in your deliberations. They are privately (family) owned. They have no debt and pay cash for everything they buy. Lastly, they make coaches only to order. There is no inventory of unsold coaches at their manufacturing facility. Newmar will make it through the tough times.
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Old 10-27-2008, 08:22 AM   #7
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If you go to Winnebago Industries and stand in the middle of the complex you would see that that they own everything you see. Essentially aside from operational costs and the workers if I had to be in the RV business at the moment I would rather be Winnebago Industries.

Winnebago also has other business that they pursue other than RV building since they provide quite a bit or aluminum extrusions to any number of companies both in and out of the RV business.

When the market begins its upswing which I expect it will, Winnebago's innovative line of products will be the RVs that people will compare all others to. Winnebago makes a nice mix of mid-line coach products that most everyone can relate to. I think that models like the 34Y Journey for instance are types of products that people readily appreciate and can get on board with.

Like every other RV manufacturer in the business at this time, jobs have been cut and plants have been closed.

In the role of iRV2.com Press, I will be going to Louisville, KY's -- 2008 RVIA Exposition and I expect to wear out a few pencils. I will be taking notes and shooting pictures and I hope to present the best of show type articles here for everyone to read.

If I find something that's new and innovative I hope that you guys will be some of the first people to "Read All About It!"

Stay Tuned!
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Old 10-27-2008, 01:44 PM   #8
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Even though I own a Winne, this is an impartial statement.. If you are looking at who the survivors are going to be when the dust settles, most likely Winnebago will be the top dog (by volume). They came into this with essentually no debt and $300mil in the survival chest, so hopefully that's enough of a buffer.

It's pretty scary that a company the size and as diverse as Fleetwood is a breath away from falling in as well.
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Old 10-27-2008, 06:18 PM   #9
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by SCVJeff:
It's pretty scary that a company the size and as diverse as Fleetwood is a breath away from falling in as well. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>Does anyone have any information about Beaudry and Fleetwood? I heard that Fleetwood put the bag on all their products on the Beaudry property. The rumor originated on the dark side.

True or False?
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Old 10-28-2008, 06:08 AM   #10
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Beaudry and Fleetwood? I heard that Fleetwood put the bag on all their products on the Beaudry property. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>
The article I read (I don't recall now where that was) did not mention Fleetwood as a mfg, but just as a brand of RV. It said that the company that provided the financing had removed the Fleetwood products from Beaudry's Tucson property and re-located them to a company owned lot. It also said that Beaudry would continue to sell other brand names. My interpretation of the article was that it is a problem between Beaudry and a finance company, NOT between Beaudry and Fleetwood.
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Old 10-28-2008, 11:25 AM   #11
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I was the one that posted the RV Business article about Beaudry losing Fleetwood in the Fleetwood Forum. Driver, does that make ME "the darkside"?

Click here to read the article in its intirety.

There still doesn't seem to be an indication anywhere, yet, about why it happened, though.

Lori-
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