Thursday, September 25, 2008

Fleetwood RV faltering?

A company news release said Fleetwood lost $23.2 million from declining RV revenues, compared to the prior-year first quarter in which it made $5.7 million. However, that income included $5.4 million Fleetwood made from selling an idle RV facility, the news release said.

Fleetwood also lost $27.8 million in continuing operations for the fiscal 2009 first quarter, about $25 million more than the $2.3 million it lost that quarter last year.

Fleetwood stock opened Monday at a $1.85 a share, but closed at $1.59.

Elden L. Smith, Fleetwood's president and chief executive officer, said the company has continued to cut costs and improve the responsiveness of its operations.

"Unfortunately, the rapid and accelerating decline of sales in the motor home industry during the first quarter caused heavy operating losses that were exacerbated by an aggressive discounting environment and downtime at our plants," he said.

Smith also said while the travel trailer division had a loss quarter, its performance was better this year compared to last year. He also said the housing group "remained profitable despite the challenging environment in that industry."

Along with the lose of revenue, Fleetwood has lost overall market share, company reports show. In 2008, Fleetwood had 13.8 percent of the market from all manufacture housing, compared to 15.5 percent in 2007.

Fleetwood's market share has declined in several areas, including for motor homes and towables. In 2007, Fleetwood had 10.9 percent of the market, but in 2008 that fell to 7.6 percent.
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