Winnebago now controls more than 10% of the recreational vehicle industry, reaching a goal it set two years ago.
The key was acquiring luxury RV maker Newmar, which boosted the company's third-quarter revenue 19% to $588.5 million over the same period last year. Excluding the acquisition, organic revenue growth was still 12%.
"Overall revenue growth remains strong, driven by vibrant Class B sales in our motor home segment and another stellar quarter from Grand Design in the towable segment. These businesses are driving significant market share gains in the RV industry," said CEO Michael Happe in a news release.
Winnebago, which has its executive offices in Eden Prairie but is officially based in Forest City, Iowa, makes RV motor homes, travel trailers, fifth-wheel towables and boats.
The company earned $14.1 million, or 44 cents per share, compared with $22.2 million, or 70 cents per share, in the first quarter last year. Adjusted EPS, which excludes transaction costs, inventory adjustments and certain interest expenses, was 73 cents per share — a 4% increase over the first quarter last year.
Winnebago announced the acquisition of luxury RV maker Newmar Corp. in September and closed on the deal in November in time to recognize three weeks' worth of Newmar's results.
"The acquisition of Newmar is pivotal in increasing our competitiveness, and we are excited about the accretion Newmar brings to our portfolio — culturally, strategically and financially," Happe said in the release. He also acknowledged that more integration work will continue.
Revenue for the motor home segment was $225.9 million, up 25% from the year ago quarter, thanks to the addition of Newmar.
Excluding Newmar, revenue for the motor home segment grew 5% in the first quarter.
The towables segment, led by its Grand Design subsidiary, saw a 16.5% increase in its revenue for the quarter.
Happe has been pushing Winnebago to be a leader in premium outdoor products and part of that mix is the luxury boat builder Chris-Craft, which it acquired in June 2018. Happe told analysts on the company's earnings call that it delivered a strong quarter and that it is in the process of building more capacity at its Sarasota, Fla., plant.
Shares of Winnebago closed Friday at $51.94, up nearly 8%. Year-to-date shares are up 115%, and it is the second-best performing Minnesota-based stock this year.
Patrick Kennedy • 612-673-7926