Forest City-based Winnebago Industries reports more record earnings. The nation’s leading motor home maker saw record net income for the second quarter of 15-point-nine-million dollars, a 29-percent increase compared to last year’s second quarter. Net income for the first six months of fiscal 2004 was a record 33-point-nine-million dollars, a 19-percent increase over last year. Winnebago C-E-O Bruce Hertzke says the recreational vehicle industry continues to thrive. He says the recent string of record earnings reports shows Winnebago is a plus to the state’s economic community. He says they’re one of the few areas in northeast Iowa that continues to hire new people. Hertzke says Winnebago’s recent expansions in Charles City have helped the company remain strong. He says they would probably have not been able to hire enough people to meet the demand if they hadn’t expanded production in Charles City. Winnebago’s sales order backlog has increased more than 50-percent when compared to last year, with just over 29-hundred orders on hand. Hertzke says it shows the demand for motor homes will continue to be strong. Hertzke says the prospects of rising gasoline prices should -not- hurt the R-V industry, as he says the actual cost of gas isn’t the concern. He says it’s more of a concern on a consumer confidence level. Winnebago reported revenues of 521-million dollars for the first six months of fiscal 2004, a 24-percent increase compared to the first six months of fiscal 2003.
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