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Prime Time Mfg. Posts Strong Growth Spurt

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An RV company in Elkhart County, Ind., reached a milestone. It has delivered more than a thousand units and announced a new product line. And for a company that didn’t exist eight months ago — the results aren’t bad, according to WSBT-TV, South Bend.

Last September, Prime Time Manufacturing Inc., a division of Forest River Inc., set up shop in a vacant RV plant in Wakarusa. The complex previously housed Travel Supreme Inc. It started making a line of travel trailers and eventually hired up to 130 employees.

“In a short seven, eight months we’ve been able to open up a plant, and just most recently, we delivered our 1,000th unit and we are excited for a lot of reasons,” said Chris Hermon, vice president of Prime Time Manufacturing.

One reason is that they will soon introduce a new line of fifth-wheels, which will translate into more jobs.

“We’re getting ready to announce here very shortly that we will have 30 to 40 people hired and then by the end of the year, we will expect to have 80 to 100 people in a new fifth-wheel plant and the product will be called ‘Crusader,’” said Hermon.

A number of people now here at Prime Time have a lot of time under their belt in RV production, some were recently unemployed but all are glad to be back in the workforce.

“It’s nice to be back at a place and have a good paycheck coming in on Fridays again, and feel confident about the next day,” said Shane Abney, who has 22 years of RV experience.

“The people that are working here are very, very happy to not have to go home at night, and worrying about not having a job, coming in and having a good place to work,” said Jeff Abney, who has 26 years of RV experience.

Prime Time is one of the latest new RV companies to start in Elkhart County. Could more new companies like theirs spring up and bring TV employment levels back up to those of the past?

“Some people might say unemployment levels will never get up to what they once were, but I am not ready to say that,” said Kyle Hannon of the Greater Elkhart Chamber of Commerce. “I don’t think anyone can predict; that industry continues to evolve.”

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