Forest City – based Winnebago Industries once again reported record financial results for the company’s first quarter ending November 27th. Revenues for the first quarter of fiscal year 2005 were a record 266-point-one million, a 4-point-4 percent increase compared to last year for the recreational vehicle manufacturer. Net income for the first quarter was a record 19-and-a-half Million, a 7-point-7 percent increase compared with the first quarter in fiscal 2004. Winnebago President and CEO Bruce Hertzke. Even with the economy, elections and gas prices, which Hertzke says could all justify a drop in business, he’s pleased to announce another record quarter. Hertzke says about the only negative of the first quarter was the round of hurricanes that hit the Southeastern part of the U.S., cutting into deliveries to those areas.Hertzke says motor home deliveries to Florida were down almost 20- percent during the first quarter, and he notes they took a big impact in southeast coastal states including Georgia, Alabama and the Carolinas. Hertzke says the company’s increased capacity pushed up its backlog of orders but that problem was finally conquered late in November. He says it was taking too long to get products to dealers, but with new factories operating at Forest City and Charles City and sub-assembly plants in Hampton and Lorimor, they can get products to market in a more timely manner. The 12-week or longer lead time’s finally been reduced to just six to 8 weeks. Hertzke says at the recent Recreational Vehicle Industry Association gathering in Louisville, Winnebago reps took 53-percent more orders from dealers than they’d had last year at the trade show. He credits the rollout of an entirely new product line. Hertzke says they introduced a brand new Winnebago View and Itasca Navion, high-mileage Class C diesel models, and some new product lines in several classes that he says were also well-received. Winnebago is the top-selling motor home manufacturer in the United States, currently leading the industry with 19-point-3 percent of the combined Class A and Class C retail market.
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