Winnebago Industries See Opportunity After Pandemic Shutdown

The shutdown and restart of Winnebago Industries’ operations due to the COVID-19 pandemic hurt the company financially, but the near future should be bright as people turn to RV’s during the recovery. The Forest City-based outdoor lifestyle manufacturer reports a fiscal third-quarter net income loss of 12-point-4 million dollars after reporting a profit of 36-point-2 million in the same period a year ago. Winnebago CEO Michael Happe says the third quarter was a uniquely challenging time for the company.

Happe says that includes the manufacturing processes, supply chain relationships, variable cost model, dealer partnerships, and especially the resilience of Winnebago’s premium brands. Happe thanked his employees for their response to the COVID-19 environment as they continue the process of returning to work in a thoughtful, safe manner.

There were countless moments of inspiration, he notes, as employees made cloth masks, face shields, contributed to fellow employees’ assistance funds, and engaged in their communities with acts of charity to help neighbors. Happe says recent indicators signal a strong recovery this summer for outdoor recreation products.

As the states continue to carefully manage the openness of their communities and activities, he says Americans are voting with their wallets and time that the outdoors is the place to be. Happe says with a refreshed lineup of high-quality motorized R-Vs and the recent purchase of Indiana motorhome manufacturer Newmar, the company is better positioned to more effectively compete in the high-end motorhome market. He adds, the motorhome segment is more balanced and competitive than ever before.

Winnebago posted overall revenues for the quarter of $402.5 million, a decrease of 24% compared to $528.9 million for the same period last year.

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