EDEN PRAIRIE, MINNESOTA — A stubborn retail environment is being blamed for a dip in revenue for Winnebago Industries.
The outdoor lifestyle products manufacturer with Iowa recreational vehicle factory locations in Forest City, Lake Mills, Charles City and Waverly reported that revenue for their fourth quarter was $771 million, down 34.6% compared to $1.2 billion for the same period a year ago. Fiscal 2023 revenues of $3.5 billion decreased 29.6% compared to $5 billion in Fiscal 2022 primarily due to lower unit sales related to retail market conditions and higher discounts and allowances compared to the prior year.
Winnebago CEO Michael Happe says the recreational consumer market continues to be challenging. “The tumultuous consumer outdoor market which characterized Fiscal Year 2023 for our company continued as expected into the fourth quarter as lower dealer deliveries and modest retail demands persisted across the RV and marine industries.”
Happe says the company continues to see the benefits of a diversified portfolio. “Our results reflect a resilient profitability of our diversified business model in a challenging demand environment. Despite a softening in unit sales, the towable RV and marine segments in particular continued their track record of profitability and margin performance.”
Happe says the addition of the Newmar and Grand Design recreational vehicle brands as well as the Chris-Craft and Barletta boat companies during his tenure as CEO have been positive for the company despite the drop in revenue for the fiscal year. “I am incredibly pleased that the foundation of the transformed company we have built over the last seven years can produce the results we just completed in a difficult market environment. We’ve remained committed to the continuous improvement of our bottom line with a focus on operational excellence, further work on productivity, cost containment, and fix overhead rationalization.”
Happe says RV retail market share performance declined slightly in the fourth quarter but there were some positive signs toward the end of the quarter. “This trend has been anticipated, and we were recently pleased to see August RV market share results be much steadier than in past months, a good sign of things to come. Grand Design, Winnebago towables and Newmar all gained share in the standalone August month.”
Fourth quarter profit for the company was $43.8 million, with profit for the fiscal year of $215.9 million.