Winnebago Returns To Profit

Recreational vehicle maker returned to a fiscal second-quarter profit Thursday as revenue more than tripled with a rise in motor home deliveries.

FOREST CITY, Iowa (AP) -- Winnebago Industries Inc. returned to a fiscal second-quarter profit Thursday as revenue more than tripled with a rise in motor home deliveries.

Recreational vehicle makers were hit hard as many consumers postponed big-ticket purchases during the recession in an attempt to conserve cash, and many RV companies cut their inventory and other costs in response.

Winnebago earned $706,000, or 2 cents per share, for the period that ended Feb. 27. That compares with a loss of $10.4 million, or 36 cents per share, a year earlier.

The latest quarter's results included $2.2 million in tax benefits.

The performance beat the expectations of analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters, who forecast a loss of 9 cents per share.

Revenue jumped to $110.5 million from $31.8 million. Winnebago said its significant increase in motor home deliveries, particularly its larger "Class A" models, led to higher production volumes and its plants being used more.

Chairman, CEO and President Bob Olson said in a statement that dealer increased their inventory during the quarter for the first time in two years.

Winnebago also filed a registration statement with the Securities and Exchange Commission to sell up to $35 million in common stock in one or more offerings as a way to achieve more financial flexibility.

The company said it doesn't plan to use the registration statement but feels "it will provide another source of liquidity."

News of the potential stock offerings did not seem to sit well with investors, as the company's shares fell $1, or 6.9 percent, to $13.55 in afternoon trading. They have traded in a 52-week range of $4.51 to $16.44.

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