RVIA: January RV Shipments ‘Best in 10 Years’

February 29, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

January’s survey of manufacturers by the Recreation Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA) showed total RV shipments to retailers jumped 10.6% over this month last year rising to 31,526 units. This was the largest January shipment total in 10 years and the second best start to a year since 1973. Powered by gains in five of the seven major vehicle categories, January wholesale shipment totals represented a seasonally adjusted annualized rate of more than 435,000 units, the highest such monthly... Read more

The BUZZ: Ostlund Aiming High for Coach-Net

February 25, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

David Ostlund Last November, Southlake, Texas-based Coach-Net, a leading provider of RV-specific OEM roadside assistance and related services, announced the appointment of David Ostlund as its president and the promotion of Kimberly Gregory to national sales director. Later that same month, Coach-Net forged a partnership with Velvac Inc., a leader in RV vision systems, to provide enhanced uptime, safety and security services to RV owners made possible by the product launch of Velvac’s new Road-iQ... Read more

Europe’s Hymer Acquires Roadtrek Motorhomes

February 23, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

Roadtrek President and CEO Jim Hammill (L) and Hymer Chairman Martin Brandt Germany-based Erwin Hymer Group (EHG), which bills itself as the world’s largest manufacturer of motorhomes and caravans with 4,400 employees in eight European production facilities, has announced its official entry into the North American RV marketplace with the acquisition of Roadtrek Motorhomes Inc., a longtime Class B builder and an established market share leader based in Kitchener, Ontario. The senior management... Read more

SSI: Strong Dec. Lifts Towables 17.4% For 2015

February 22, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

Led by continued strength in the travel trailer sector and double-digit gains in all sectors during December, year-over-year towable retail registrations grew 22% for the month and 17.4% for the full year, according to the latest report from Statistical Surveys Inc. (SSI). Results by category showed: Sales for the high-volume travel trailer segment increased 21.3% for the month and finished the year up 20.8%. Fifth-wheel registrations climbed 21.2% in December and 9.7% for the 12 months. Folding... Read more

CalRVDA’s Members Set for Feb. 25 Conference

February 19, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

Officials at the California RV Dealers Association (CalRVDA) are making final preparations for the group’s 2016 Conference, Feb. 25 at the Agua Caliente Resort in Rancho Mirage. The conference will host a number of state and national speakers as well as the induction of a new slate of officers, including the expected installation of Steve Richardson of Richardson’s RV Centers Inc., a three-store dealership based in Riverside, as president. Ernie Friesen, who helped found CalRVDA in 1994, told... Read more

Patrick 4Q Net Income Rises 65% on RV Growth

February 18, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

Elkhart Ind.-based supplier Patrick Industries Inc. today (Feb. 18) reported a 65% increase in fourth-quarter net income lifted by 32% growth in RV sales. Net sales for the fourth quarter, ended Dec. 31, grew 31% to $248.7 million from $189.6 million in the same quarter of 2014. The company reported that the jump in RV revenue reflected “the incremental contribution from acquisitions completed in 2014 and in 2015, market share gains and industry growth.” Sales to the RV industry represented... Read more

Winter Shows: Industry’s Still in a Growth Mode

February 16, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

RVers packed the vendor booths at the Tampa Show (Photo by Shawn Spence) As gas prices barrel down below $2 a gallon, RVers have come out in force during the early round of winter shows that generally set a barometer for the coming year in terms of trends in the industry and potential sales. And, despite the backdrop of a gyrating stock market, RV dealers and show organizers are reporting that out of the gate 2016 is seizing on last year’s momentum, which delivered post-recession highs for the... Read more

The BUZZ: Meet Winnebago’s CEO Mike Happe

February 15, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

Mike Happe When RVB caught up with new Winnebago Industries Inc. President and CEO Michael J. Happe late Friday afternoon (Feb. 12), he was driving north from Winnebago’s Forest City, Iowa, headquarters to the suburban St. Paul, Minn., site of his 17-year-old son Brady’s high school basketball game. It was a fitting moment for Happe, a former Toro executive who succeeded Winnebago CEO Randy Potts on Jan. 18 and is working to balance family demands with those of the 2,900-employee, publicly-held... Read more

December & Year-End Motorhome Sales Surge

February 12, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

Motorhome sales ended 2015 on a solid note as December retail registrations jumped 27.1% compared to the previous year with both Class A and Class C sales showing marked gains. For the full year, the motorized sector posted a 16.1% year-over-year gain. According to the latest report by Statistical Surveys Inc. (SSI), Forest River Inc. was the motorized sales leader for the 12 months with a 26.2% market share, ahead of Thor Industries Inc. (25.1%) and Winnebago Industries Inc. (19.6%) share. Sales... Read more

Acquisitions, Furrion Agreement Lift Drew 4Q

February 11, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

Drew Industries Inc, parent of industry supplier Lippert Components Inc., today (Feb. 11) reported record fourth-quarter revenue lifted by strategic acquisitions and the July distribution and supply agreement for premium electronics with Furrion. Net income during the quarter, ended Dec. 31, totaled $16.1 million, or 65 cents per diluted share, compared to net income of $12 million, or 49 cents per diluted share, the previous year. The company noted that in connection with previously announced severance... Read more

MARVAC Holds ’50th Detroit Show’ Reception

February 10, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

Ribbon cutting for the 50th Detroit RV Show at last night’s reception (Photo by Rick Kessler) More than 200 people turned out to celebrate the 50th Annual Detroit Camper & RV Show at a gala event Tuesday (Feb. 9) at the Suburban Collection Showplace in Novi, Mich. (To view a slideshow of the event scroll to the right side of the website). The event marked the official prelude to today’s opening of the five-day public show, which, as it has been for the last half... Read more

HUD Proposes Rule for Clarifying RV Definition

February 9, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

The U.S. Department of Urban Affairs (HUD) today published a proposed rule entitled “Manufactured Home Procedural and Enforcement Regulations; Revision of Exemption for Recreational Vehicle.” This publication represents a significant milestone in the RV industry’s 10-year effort to draw a brighter and clearer line between recreation vehicles and manufactured housing. The Recreation Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA) reported that HUD’s proposed rule seeks to revise the exemption... Read more

Tiffin Motorhomes Builds New Chassis Facility

February 8, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

Tiffin Motorhomes President Bob Tiffin Editor’s Note: The following is a column by Tiffin Motorhomes Inc. President Bob Tiffin appearing in the Winter issue of “Roughing it Smoothly,” a magazine published four times a year by Book Production Resources for Tiffin motorhome owners.  Solving production problems is just part of operating a manufacturing plant. It’s always a good problem when demand for your product causes you to expand your manufacturing capacity. However, a new building... Read more

Keystone’s Zimmerman, Juday, Runels Move Up

February 6, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

Thor Industries Inc. today (Feb. 5) announced a series of organizational changes at Keystone RV Co., Dutchmen Manufacturing and CrossRoads RV. Matt Zimmerman will assume the role of CEO of Keystone, after serving for four years as the company’s president. In his new role as CEO, Zimmerman and a select group of Keystone’s operations team will provide oversight to Keystone, Dutchmen and CrossRoads. Zimmerman will continue to report directly to Thor President and CEO Bob Martin. “This... Read more

Elkhart ‘Open House’ is Set for Week of Sept. 19

February 5, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

The 2016 Elkhart RV Open House, one of the RV industry’s two key national wholesale RV-buying trade venues, is slated for the week of Sept. 19 in and around the northern Indiana city of Elkhart. The show immediately follows one of the year’s top retail-centric events – the Pennsylvania RV & Camping Association’s popular Hershey Show, Sept. 12-18 at the Giant Center in Hershey, Pa. The release of the dates for the Open House, originally launched in 2009 as a proprietary Forest River Inc.... Read more

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