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Travel Trailer/Fifth-Wheel Sales OK

September 21, 2001 by · Leave a Comment 

Retail sales of travel trailers, fifth-wheels and park models declined modestly during July, at least when compared with the motorhome sector of the RV industry, according to Statistical Surveys Inc., an independent market research firm. The number of travel trailers sold by dealers during July declined 5.2% to 11,533 units, compared with 12,172 units sold during July 2000. Meanwhile, fifth-wheel sales slipped in July 4.3% to 5,272 units, compared with 5,510 units retailed a year earlier. Additionally,... Read more

Bigger Dealers See Bigger Profits

September 20, 2001 by · Leave a Comment 

The average larger RV dealership saw a solid increase in profitability when the first seven months of this year are compared with the same portion of 2000, according to consultant firm the Spader Companies. The Spader firm defines larger dealerships as having more than $5 million in annual sales, and the average larger dealer reported a 6.8% increase in net earnings during the first seven months of this year. The average larger dealer earned $353,484 through the end of July. Profits increased despite... Read more

Small Dealer Profits Soar 43%

September 20, 2001 by · Leave a Comment 

The profitability of the average smaller RV dealership was up sharply when the first seven months of this year are compared with the same portion of 2000, according to consultant firm the Spader Companies. The Spader firm defines smaller dealerships as having less than $5 million in annual sales, and the average smaller dealer reported a 43.2% increase in net earnings during the first seven months of this year. The average smaller dealer earned $107,729 through the end of July. The average smaller... Read more

Cruise America Appeals to Business Travelers

September 19, 2001 by · Leave a Comment 

Nationwide RV rental company Cruise America believes business executives should consider travel by RV as an alternative to commercial airline flights during the current period of crisis. The Mesa, Ariz.-based company saw an increase in demand from business travelers after the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, according to Bob Caldarone, director of sales and marketing. “During the first few days following the disaster, we had a lot of business travelers doing three-night rentals,” Caldarone... Read more

Rec. USA 3Q Loss Narrows

September 19, 2001 by · Leave a Comment 

Dealership chain Holiday RV Superstores Inc., which does business as Recreation USA, reports its loss narrowed during the third quarter of its fiscal year, which ended July 31. The 16-location RV and boat dealership group lost $427,360 during the May-through-July period of this year, compared with a loss of $469,034 a year earlier. The company’s sales revenue declined 6% to $36.4 million during the three months ended July 31. Recreation USA’s losses during the nine months ended July 31 totaled... Read more

Kit Reports Third Quarter Loss

September 19, 2001 by · Leave a Comment 

Towable RV and manufactured home builder Kit Manufacturing Co. reports it lost $614,000 during the third quarter of its fiscal year, which ended July 31. The company’s loss during the May-through-July period compares with a profit of $53,000 earned a year earlier. The profit earned during the May-through-June portion of 2000 occurred largely due to a one-time-only after-tax gain of $402,000 from the sale of property in Kansas. Kit’s total sales declined 16% during its third fiscal quarter to... Read more

Motorhome Retail Sales Decline in July

September 19, 2001 by · Leave a Comment 

Retail sales of Class A motorhomes declined 15.3% and Class C motorhome sales slipped 9% during July, according to Statistical Surveys Inc., and independent market research firm. There were 3,096 Class A’s sold by dealers to retail buyers during July, compared with 3,657 Class A’s sold during July 2000, Statistical Surveys reports. There were 1,420 Class C’s retailed in July, compared with 1,560 Class C’s sold a year earlier. During the first seven months of this year, Class A motorhome retail... Read more

RVDA Con/Expo “a Go!”

September 18, 2001 by · Leave a Comment 

The Recreation Vehicle Dealers Association (RVDA) International Convention/Expo will go ahead as planned in Las Vegas beginning on Sunday (Sept. 23). In view of last week’s tragic events, RVDA Chairman Ernie Friesen, and President Mike Molino issued the following statement to dealer and associate members: The leadership of RVDA joins with all its members in offering our deepest sympathy to those who have lost family or friends in the enemy attacks on our people and our freedom last week. Please... Read more

Life Goes On For RV Industry Community

September 18, 2001 by · Leave a Comment 

As the world was galvanized by last week’s terrorist attack at the World Trade Center, peoples’ reactions, of course, varied widely as to what to do about ongoing business commitments. RV industry people, just like those in every other walk of life, had to make instantaneous decisions – none more so than RV lifestyle consumer activist Gaylord Maxwell. When the tragic news surfaced, Maxwell was conducting the first full morning session of a “Life on Wheels” conference, an... Read more

Deere Credit Exits RV Retail Finance

September 18, 2001 by · Leave a Comment 

John Deere Credit will exit the RV retail finance business effective Sept. 28, the company announced. The decision was not the result of concerns about the impact of last week’s terrorist attacks on consumer confidence, said Gordon Tjelmeland, spokesman for John Deere Credit. Instead, the decision was based upon “a careful analysis of where we are. Over the past few years, John Deere Credit has experienced increasing demand for financial services related to core equipment financing,”... Read more

Colorado Samboree a Huge Success

September 18, 2001 by · Leave a Comment 

The awful events occurring in New York and Washington last week did not stand in the way of the Good Sam Club having a successful rally in Pueblo, Colo., last weekend, according to Sharla Hayward, Colorado State director of Good Sam, a provider of financial and membership services to RV enthusiasts. Good Sam is a unit of Affinity Group, which also is the parent of TL Enterprises Inc., publisher of RVBUSINESS.COM and RV Business magazine. A total of 552 people and 277 RV units congregated at the Colorado... Read more

Fed Slashes Interest Rates

September 17, 2001 by · Leave a Comment 

The Federal Reserve, meeting in emergency session today (Sept. 17), slashed interest rates 1/2% to pump cash into the financial system. The latest rate cut will lower the benchmark prime rate charged by major banks to 6%, the lowest level for the prime since early 1994. The lower prime will take effect Tuesday (Sept. 18). The latest rate reduction will further reduce RV dealers’ inventory carrying costs, because most of their floorplan interest rates are pegged to the prime. However, long-term... Read more

Lazydays Plans 15% Inventory Expansion

September 17, 2001 by · Leave a Comment 

Mega-dealership Lazydays RV SuperCenter, Seffner, Fla., will go ahead with its plans to expand its inventory by 15% during the next year, said Don Wallace, president and CEO. Lazydays, which achieved $566 million in sales revenue during 2000, recently completed its forecast for the coming year, and Wallace said last week’s terrorist attacks will not change his new-unit ordering plans. “Our customers are proud, defiant people,” Wallace said. “They respond positively when threatened.” The... Read more

Public Supports Harrisburg Show

September 17, 2001 by · Leave a Comment 

Attendance was down only 2% at the Pennsylvania RV & Camping Show which concluded on Sunday (Sept. 16), according to Larry Mellott, show chairman. “Our customers said, ‘We’re not going to crawl under a rock, we’ll go on with our lives,’ ” said Mellott, co-owner of Mellott Brothers Trailer Sales, Willow Street, Pa. The 2% decline is equivalent to only 40 to 50 fewer attendees when compared with attendance at the show during 2000, which was the best-attended Harrisburg show... Read more

Gulf Stream Motorhome Sales Soar at Harrisburg

September 17, 2001 by · Leave a Comment 

Gulf Stream Coach Corp. reported basically twice its normal motorhome sales volume during the recently completed Pennsylvania RV & Camping Show in Harrisburg, Pa. “We sold 35 motorhomes at Harrisburg,” said Claude Donati, national sales manager for motorhomes at Nappanee, Ind.-based Gulf Stream. “Normally, we sell 15 to 20 motorhomes at Harrisburg.” “This isn’t fluff, these are actually completed transactions,” added Brian Shea, president of Gulf Stream’s... Read more

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