Tuesday, July 05, 2005

International Truck and Engine Corporation, has agreed to acquire Workhorse Custom Chassis

Navistar International Corporation (NYSE: NAV) announced today that its operating company, International Truck and Engine Corporation, has entered into an agreement to acquire Workhorse Custom Chassis, a leading manufacturer of chassis for motor homes and commercial step-van vehicles.

Terms of the all-cash deal were not disclosed. The acquisition is expected to close in Navistar's fiscal 2005 fourth quarter. The proposed acquisition also includes Uptime Parts, a parts distribution network that supplies commercial fleets and RV dealers.

Workhorse is a U.S.-based leader in the sale of the gas RV chassis and Class 3-6 step-vans, having produced more than 18,000 chassis in 2004. Both companies were profitable in calendar year 2004 with combined sales of approximately $480 million.

Daniel C. Ustian, Navistar chairman, president and chief executive officer, said the acquisition will enable International to immediately become a major player in the growing Class A RV chassis market, and provide the opportunity to grow its diesel engine and parts sales.

The RV industry is forecast to grow three to five percent over each of the next five years, due in part to the growing popularity of motor homes among baby boomers. Sales of Class A units last year exceeded 40,000. Step-van sales range from 8,000 to 12,000 units per year and are expected to continue to grow as the result of increased home shopping and e-commerce by consumers.

Ustian noted that the commonality between International's product line and the commercial and RV chassis produced at Workhorse will result in potential significant purchasing synergies for Workhorse. In addition, a critical segment of the motor home market is the diesel rear-engine chassis which today represents less than 50 percent of the market.

"International's diesel competencies and engine portfolio provide great opportunities for expansion of the Workhorse products into these segments of the market and the first step in that process will be the planned introduction of the International(R) VT275 V-6 engine in a Workhorse commercial chassis later in 2005," Ustian said. Full Story...





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