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‘CBS News’ Revisits Elkhart Co.; Tracks RV Boom

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December 7, 2017 by   Leave a Comment

CBS News anchor Jeff Glor looks at the RV resurgence

Americans are hitting the road in recreational vehicles. CBS News reported that sales this year top half a million units — the highest in nearly four decades. (To view a video click here or scroll to the right side of the RVBUSINESS.com home page.)

Part of northern Indiana is the birthplace for 85% of all the RVs in this country. And they can’t seem to build them fast enough. 

The lots at Jayco Inc., a subsidiary of Thor Industries Inc., are lined with all kinds of RVs selling for $15,000 on up.

CBS News opted for the cavernous luxury of the Entegra model with Thor President and CEO Bob Martin. On board there are couches, cabinets, a fridge, a fireplace — and more. 

“People love to travel with their own bedding,” said Martin. “Their own linens, their own showers.” 

During the Great Recession, unemployment in this region was close to 20%. Today, it’s 2%. 

Matt Lester was once laid off, but now he is a foreman. 

“Things have loosened up a lot,” Lester said. “We’ve come a long way in the industry. We really have.” 

A Jayco warehouse will soon need 400 more workers at starting salaries near $50,000 a year. 

Nearby Elkhart, once down on its luck, is now high on the hog with a bustling downtown and a local KFC offering a $150 hiring bonus. 

For the full story and to view a video click here.

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