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Affinity Clubs Division Realigns, Promotes Five

January 31, 2008 by · Leave a Comment 

The Affinity Clubs division of Ventura, Calif.-based Affinity Group Inc. has announced some promotions, along with some realigned responsibilities, for 2008 that are designed to enable the company to enhance membership experiences, elevate membership and affiliate marketing results and expand into new market spaces, according to Grant E. Miller, senior vice president of AGI and president of Affinity Clubs. Among the promotions: Marcos Strafacce will undertake the expanded role of vice president,... Read more

Registration Open for RVDA ’08 Convention/Expo

January 31, 2008 by · Leave a Comment 

Registration is now open for the “new and different” 2008 RV Dealers International Convention/Expo in Las Vegas, Nev., at the Rio All-Suite Hotel and Casino, Sept. 23-26. The annual event is sponsored by Fairfax, Va.-based National RV Dealers Association (RVDA) and RVDA of Canada and features educational workshops developed by the RV Learning Center. The new convention format is designed to be two educational events in one. For dealer owners and general managers, new RV Learning Center... Read more

RVDA Appeals to Lenders for Rate Relief

January 31, 2008 by · Leave a Comment 

The Recreation Vehicle Dealers Association (RVDA) has asked banks and finance companies to explain why retail interest rates on loans to buy RVs haven’t dropped as a result of recent Federal Reserve Board interest rate reductions. In a Jan. 30 letter to 26 RV industry lenders, RVDA President Mike Molino said dealers are losing deals because consumers think that loan rates should be lower than they are. “They are all kinds of theories about why they have haven’t (cut retail) rates,”... Read more

Aggressive Hoosier Immigration Bill Draws Fire

January 31, 2008 by · Leave a Comment 

In a move that could ultimately affect many Hoosier State businesses — including the RV sector — the Indiana Senate late Tuesday (Jan. 29) approved aggressive legislation that could close down businesses if they are caught employing illegal immigrants three times over 10 years. The 37-11 vote in the Republican-dominated Senate came after a lengthy debate on the effects of the proposed law, which still must be approved by the Indiana House of Representatives. House Speaker B. Patrick Bauer, D-South... Read more

M-Tec Maps $3M Expansion in Elkhart

January 31, 2008 by · Leave a Comment 

M-Tec Corp., a developer and manufacturer of steel frames and components for the recreational vehicle and industrial markets, announced today (Jan. 31) it will expand its operations in Elkhart, Ind., creating more than 40 new jobs. According to a press release, the company, which develops and manufactures products ranging from trailer frames to custom sink and slide-out mechanisms for RVs, will invest more than $3 million to add more than 60,000 square feet to its production facility at 701 Collins... Read more

Fleetwood Announces Preliminary 3Q Revenues

January 31, 2008 by · Leave a Comment 

Fleetwood Enterprises, Inc. today (Jan. 31) announced preliminary fiscal third quarter 2008 revenues of approximately $354 million, a 20% decline from $443 million in the same quarter last year. For the first nine months of the current fiscal year, revenues declined 10% to $1.35 billion from $1.5 billion the prior year. President and CEO Elden L. Smith issued the following statement regarding the Riverside, Calif.-based company’s third quarter, ended Jan. 27: “The third quarter, which encompasses... Read more

Damon Plans First Class C Motorhome Entry

January 31, 2008 by · Leave a Comment 

Elkhart, Ind.-based Class A motorhome manufacturer Damon Motor Coach has hired a development team to design a Class C motorhome that, according to the company’s plans, will be available by the end of summer. “They are going to independently develop this product for us separate from our Class A business,” said Bill Fenech, president of the Thor Industries Inc. subsidiary. “I believe in focus. I wanted to develop a Class C, but I didn’t want to distract our team that is building... Read more

Coachmen Moving Headquarters to Middlebury

January 30, 2008 by · Leave a Comment 

Coachmen Industries Inc. outlined several cost-cutting measures as part of the company’s ongoing restructuring plan during a conference call with investors Tuesday (Jan. 29), including consolidating its corporate headquarters in Elkhart, Ind., into its manufacturing complex in nearby Middlebury. The recreational vehicle and manufactured housing builder cited the impact of “bleak conditions” in its core markets during 2007, resulting in a 15% decline in revenue and a net loss from continuing... Read more

Go RVing Kicks Off ’08 With Super Week

January 30, 2008 by · Leave a Comment 

It’s not only a big week for football fans across the nation, it’s also shaping up to be a super week for Go RVing and the RV industry. Go RVing’s $16 million 2008 media plan will kick off this Sunday (Feb. 3) with the industry group’s first-ever Super Bowl buy. The 30-second version of the popular “Imaginary Friends” commercial will air just prior to kickoff during the 5:30 to 6 p.m. final half-hour of the FOX Super Bowl XLII Pregame Show. Ratings for Super Bowl XLII are projected to... Read more

Heritage Foundation Names 2008 Class

January 30, 2008 by · Leave a Comment 

Ten past and current leaders of the recreation vehicle and manufactured housing industries are to be inducted Aug. 4 into the RV/MH Hall of Fame in Elkhart, Ind., joining 300 others who have been recognized by the hall over the last 35 years. The induction dinner will be held at the RV/MH Heritage Foundation Inc.’s new museum and hall of fame adjacent to the Indiana Toll Road north of Elkhart. Inductees selected by the foundation’s board are: Wilbur Bontrager, chairman of Jayco Inc., Middlebury,... Read more

Thor ‘Corporate Support’ Moving to Elkhart

January 30, 2008 by · Leave a Comment 

Thor Industries Inc. has about halfway completed a move of its corporate support services to Elkhart, Ind., from Jackson Center, Ohio. “We can better serve our companies by being in close proximity to where they are located,” said Thor COO Richard E. “Dickey” Riegel. The move was announced last June and about 15 people in Thor’s legal, information technology and human resources departments have moved into the 10,000-square-foot building that Thor purchased in the Windsor... Read more

Austin Burn Victims Blame Propane System

January 30, 2008 by · Leave a Comment 

Four men burned in a fire at the Austin City Limits Music Festival in September have sued, alleging that their injuries were caused by an overfilled and improperly manufactured propane tank and an improperly designed RV generator, the Austin American-Statesman reported. Dave Smith, Darryl Jackson, Stuart Givens and Kenny Burleson and the company they all work for, Brown Distributing, filed the lawsuit Tuesday in District Court in Travis County against various companies that leased and made the propane... Read more

Federal Reserve Does It Again — 1/2 Point

January 30, 2008 by · Leave a Comment 

The Federal Reserve on Wednesday (Jan. 30) cut a key interest rate for the second time in just more than a week, reducing the federal funds rate by a half point at the same time signaling that further rate cuts were possible, according to The Associated Press. The news on Wednesday briefly sent stocks higher on Wall Street. Within minutes after the announcement, the Dow Jones Industrial Average, which had been down slightly in early afternoon, was up 100 points. But it gave up all those gains and... Read more

Coachmen Reports Net Loss for 4Q, Full Year

January 29, 2008 by · Leave a Comment 

Faced with one of the company’s “most challenging years,” according to Coachmen Industries Inc. President and CEO Rick Lavers, the firm reported lower sales and a wider net loss for its full year ended Dec. 31. The Elkhart, Ind.-based recreational vehicle and manufactured housing builder posted fourth-quarter sales of $77 million versus $115.8 million the previous year while reporting a net loss in continuing operations of $13.8 million compared with a net loss of $31.4 million.... Read more

House Members Say CDC Manipulated by FEMA

January 29, 2008 by · Leave a Comment 

Democratic leaders of a House science subcommittee alleged Monday (Jan. 29) that the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) manipulated scientific research into the potential danger posed by formaldehyde fumes emitted in trailers still housing tens of thousands of survivors of hurricanes Katrina and Rita. The Washington Post reported that the congressmen in a letter to Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff stated FEMA “ignored, hid and manipulated government research on the potential... Read more

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