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RVing message boards => Industry news, rumors and recalls => Topic started by: docj on September 16, 2019, 10:26:49 AM

Title: Winnebago purchases Newmar
Post by: docj on September 16, 2019, 10:26:49 AM
The consolidation of the RV industry continues:

https://www.globenewswire.com/news-release/2019/09/16/1915855/0/en/Winnebago-Industries-to-Acquire-Premium-RV-Manufacturer-Newmar.html (https://www.globenewswire.com/news-release/2019/09/16/1915855/0/en/Winnebago-Industries-to-Acquire-Premium-RV-Manufacturer-Newmar.html)
Title: Re: Winnebago purchases Newmar
Post by: Alpena Jeff on September 16, 2019, 10:48:28 AM
Yikes!
Title: Re: Winnebago purchases Newmar
Post by: Back2PA on September 16, 2019, 10:56:49 AM
Wow. That's actually surprising
Title: Re: Winnebago purchases Newmar
Post by: darsben on September 16, 2019, 11:03:02 AM
There goes the neighborhood
Title: Re: Winnebago purchases Newmar
Post by: SargeW on September 16, 2019, 11:18:57 AM
Well, the sad part is that was one of the few manufactures left that was still family owned and operated. Nothing against Winnebago though, I have owned 2 Winnebago's and they are good well built coaches.  But Winnebago also owns Country Coach and Air Stream, so they are really expanding their portfolio.   
Title: Re: Winnebago purchases Newmar
Post by: Larry N. on September 16, 2019, 11:40:03 AM
Well, I suppose the support will go downhill...  :(
Title: Re: Winnebago purchases Newmar
Post by: docj on September 16, 2019, 12:15:26 PM
But Winnebago also owns Country Coach and Air Stream, so they are really expanding their portfolio.

With all due respect Airstream is owned by Thor.  https://www.nytimes.com/2001/11/01/business/company-news-thor-to-buy-airstream-becoming-travel-trailer-leader.html (https://www.nytimes.com/2001/11/01/business/company-news-thor-to-buy-airstream-becoming-travel-trailer-leader.html)
Title: Re: Winnebago purchases Newmar
Post by: Lou Schneider on September 16, 2019, 01:25:59 PM
Winnebago owns Grand Design trailers so that sort of compensates for not owning Airstream.  Plus they purchased Sunnybrook a few years back.
Title: Re: Winnebago purchases Newmar
Post by: Becks on September 16, 2019, 01:47:31 PM
Just read nine pages of doom and gloom on another forum. Caught everyone by surprise.
Title: Re: Winnebago purchases Newmar
Post by: Utclmjmpr on September 16, 2019, 02:41:26 PM

 Just another way to minimize the competition.>>>Dan
Title: Re: Winnebago purchases Newmar
Post by: UTTransplant on September 16, 2019, 03:44:43 PM
I think this explains why Winnebago dropped a number of their Class A models recently. I donít see doom and gloom in this. Winnebago makes nice coaches, maybe not as nice as most Newmars, but I bet they want to play in the top rungs.
Title: Re: Winnebago purchases Newmar
Post by: Alpena Jeff on September 16, 2019, 04:41:37 PM
I think this explains why Winnebago dropped a number of their Class A models recently. I donít see doom and gloom in this. Winnebago makes nice coaches, maybe not as nice as most Newmars, but I bet they want to play in the top rungs.
Yea, I'm in this camp also. Both groups have their reasons.
Title: Re: Winnebago purchases Newmar
Post by: Larry N. on September 16, 2019, 05:02:50 PM
I think this explains why Winnebago dropped a number of their Class A models recently. I donít see doom and gloom in this. Winnebago makes nice coaches, maybe not as nice as most Newmars, but I bet they want to play in the top rungs.
I'm hoping for the best, but I've seen too many corporate "mergers"/"buyouts" where the bought out brand soon went downhill, or even disappeared, so I tend to be rather skeptical. Marantz audio products is one of many examples.
Title: Re: Winnebago purchases Newmar
Post by: garyb1st on September 16, 2019, 05:26:28 PM
I think this explains why Winnebago dropped a number of their Class A models recently. I donít see doom and gloom in this. Winnebago makes nice coaches, maybe not as nice as most Newmars, but I bet they want to play in the top rungs.

Hard to say.  Thought they bought Country Coach a few years ago?  That was a great buy if they were looking to move into the high end market.  My guess is there are other reasons for acquiring Newmar.  Facilities, processes, skilled workers.  Then again, maybe the acquisition was simply based on another long term goal.  The industry is consolidating.  They are two eventual outcomes.  Either they will acquire or they will be acquired. 
Title: Re: Winnebago purchases Newmar
Post by: ArdraF on September 16, 2019, 05:27:57 PM
Yes, with Monaco being a prime example!

ArdraF
Title: Re: Winnebago purchases Newmar
Post by: Heli_av8tor on September 16, 2019, 06:23:41 PM
There goes the neighborhood

For Winnebago or for Newmar????
Title: Re: Winnebago purchases Newmar
Post by: irishtom29 on September 16, 2019, 07:18:38 PM
I'm hoping for the best, but I've seen too many corporate "mergers"/"buyouts" where the bought out brand soon went downhill, or even disappeared, so I tend to be rather skeptical. Marantz audio products is one of many examples.

Marantz hasn't been top shelf since vacuum tube days.
Title: Re: Winnebago purchases Newmar
Post by: UTTransplant on September 16, 2019, 08:16:23 PM
Hard to say.  Thought they bought Country Coach a few years ago?  That was a great buy if they were looking to move into the high end market.  My guess is there are other reasons for acquiring Newmar.  Facilities, processes, skilled workers.  Then again, maybe the acquisition was simply based on another long term goal.  The industry is consolidating.  They are two eventual outcomes.  Either they will acquire or they will be acquired.
I think Winnebago really did hope the Country Coach acquisition would bring them into the higher end market. The problem I heard about was supply chain related. It is just too far from the Midwest-oriented volume parts suppliers, one of the reasons Country Coach had problems before. Iowa and Indiana arenít too far apart, and it will be easier to get cost improvements through shared suppliers.
Title: Re: Winnebago purchases Newmar
Post by: Larry N. on September 16, 2019, 08:35:22 PM
Marantz hasn't been top shelf since vacuum tube days.
That's when I was talking about.
Title: Re: Winnebago purchases Newmar
Post by: Spring Creek on September 16, 2019, 09:08:06 PM
Iíve owned 2 Winnebagos and one Newmar...the quality on my Winnebagoís were far superior to the Newmar.  And Iím talking Winnebago class C to the top of the line gas Newmar.

While anything can happen after a merger Iíd let the chips fall before I predicted Armageddon for Newmar quality.

One thing that they might bring to Newmar is better documentation...Newmarís was almost non existent.

That said, Iím stilled stunned with the announcement.
Title: Re: Winnebago purchases Newmar
Post by: Gary RV_Wizard on September 16, 2019, 09:08:35 PM
The Country Coach purchase was supposed to propel them into the top rank of motorhomes, but they couldn't make a go of it.  Various reasons have been offered, but the bottom line remains the same: an expensive FLOP.  Let's hope the Newmar purchase works out better for both parties.   Meanwhile, I see it as a loss for consumers - market consolidation rarely produces more or better products.  Or pricing.
Title: Re: Winnebago purchases Newmar
Post by: SargeW on September 17, 2019, 10:02:06 AM
With all due respect Airstream is owned by Thor.  https://www.nytimes.com/2001/11/01/business/company-news-thor-to-buy-airstream-becoming-travel-trailer-leader.html (https://www.nytimes.com/2001/11/01/business/company-news-thor-to-buy-airstream-becoming-travel-trailer-leader.html)

Yeah you are right Joel. I was thinking towables, and Winnebago's recent acquisition of Grand Design.  That's another brand that the owners were worried about the new company take over.  But I haven't heard any negative comments about that so far.
Title: Re: Winnebago purchases Newmar
Post by: Koodog on September 17, 2019, 05:09:41 PM
The Country Coach purchase was supposed to propel them into the top rank of motorhomes, but they couldn't make a go of it.  Various reasons have been offered, but the bottom line remains the same: an expensive FLOP.  Let's hope the Newmar purchase works out better for both parties.   Meanwhile, I see it as a loss for consumers - market consolidation rarely produces more or better products.  Or pricing.

Totally agree. Competition seems to be good for any market.
Consolidation will not/does not benefit consumers.
I for one am sad to hear this news.
 
Title: Re: Winnebago purchases Newmar
Post by: Gary RV_Wizard on September 17, 2019, 05:33:42 PM
With Damon, Dutchmen, Georgie Boy, Keystone, Monaco, Fleetwood, Jayco and now Newmar all folded into corporate behemoths, choice is rapidly being limited.  That is near-always a negative for quality, warranty, and customer service, and those are already in the pits in the RV industry.
Title: Re: Winnebago purchases Newmar
Post by: winona on September 17, 2019, 06:01:05 PM
. Iowa and Indiana arenít too far apart, and it will be easier to get cost improvements through shared suppliers.

With Winnebago towables being made in Indiana and Newmar made in Indiana, suppliers are all close by -- Mishawaka and Elkhart.  Maybe makes sense from that angle.
Title: Re: Winnebago purchases Newmar
Post by: indiana journey on September 19, 2019, 07:31:44 AM
Actually, Newmar approached Winnebago about buying them; https://rvbusiness.com/coach-builder-newmar-a-natural-fit-.../
They wanted a quality owner to keep the business going and improving. Similar to the Grand Design purchase but less expensive for Winnebago.
Indiana Journey
Title: Re: Winnebago purchases Newmar
Post by: ChasA on September 20, 2019, 05:23:44 PM
Quote: "They wanted a quality owner to keep the business going and improving."
Yeah, the former owner of Country Coach said the same thing.
Title: Re: Winnebago purchases Newmar
Post by: Back2PA on September 20, 2019, 05:48:28 PM
Quote: "They wanted a quality owner to keep the business going and improving."


The $344M had nothing to do with it
Title: Re: Winnebago purchases Newmar
Post by: HueyPilotVN on September 20, 2019, 06:31:24 PM

About ten years ago before I retired we had a meeting between four people from my company and about ten members of the management team for Newmar.

Both Matthew and his father Mahon were in the meeting.

We were looking at Newmar to produce the 40 foot Diesel Pusher Clinics to use in our Mobile Hospitals.

I worked with their design team to develop about ten different configurations.

We did not end up using Newmar for the units.  We also had similar discussions with Country coach.

Title: Re: Winnebago purchases Newmar
Post by: Gary RV_Wizard on September 21, 2019, 11:33:28 AM
I think it's a brilliant move by the Miller family to cash in on their decades of investment while the RV market is at a historical peak. They get a bunch of cash, a big chunk of Winnebago stock so they can continue to cash in if the RV industry stays hot, plus they still get to play at running the family company. What's not to like about a deal like that?

For Winnebago, the benefits seem much more subjective. They invest their big supply of cash into a thriving business that [mostly] is not competing with their own products and get some luxury brand bragging rights, but it's difficult for me to see where there is any benefit to their design and manufacturing.  Dealers may benefit from carrying both brands, but they could do that before the merger simply by picking up the franchises they desired. Both companies franchise on a model-by-model basis, so dealers don't now get the whole Newmar line simply because they already carry some Winnebago lines. And they still deal with Newmar sales, service and warranty as separate entities.

The downside for Winnebago is the huge financial burden when RV industry sales inevitably go into the toilet during the next economic downturn. They have two companies (3 with Grand Design) to somehow keep afloat.  They've obviously forgotten 2009-2010. All three companies could go under if it is severe.
Title: Re: Winnebago purchases Newmar
Post by: garyb1st on September 21, 2019, 12:05:59 PM
I think it's a brilliant move by the Miller family to cash in on their decades of investment while the RV market is at a historical peak. They get a bunch of cash, a big chunk of Winnebago stock so they can continue to cash in if the RV industry stays hot, plus they still get to play at running the family company. What's not to like about a deal like that?

Good point.  But there could be another element that's harder to evaluate.  From what I've read on line, Mahon Miller, a very successful inventor/innovator, only made it through 6th grade in his Mennonite School.  Based on that fact alone, in order to achieve what he did, he had to be a very bright, confident, open minded and extremely hardworking young man.  He obviously had large shoes to fill.  There's not much information on his son Matt.  Whether or not Matt was comfortable walking in those shoes will likely never be known. 
 
Title: Re: Winnebago purchases Newmar
Post by: Gary RV_Wizard on September 21, 2019, 02:04:42 PM
Matthew has been President & CEO since 2006 and has received an award from the RVIA for his contributions to the industry, so I think he has had time to get used to those shoes.   However, running a successful mid-sized company in an extremely competitive industry is hardly a 9-5 job. Perhaps he has opted to reduce his stress, maybe even envisioning retirement in a few years.
Title: Re: Winnebago purchases Newmar
Post by: winona on September 22, 2019, 01:16:09 PM
I think it's a brilliant move by the Miller family to cash in on their decades of investment while the RV market is at a historical peak. They get a bunch of cash, a big chunk of Winnebago stock so they can continue to cash in if the RV industry stays hot, plus they still get to play at running the family company. What's not to like about a deal like that?

For Winnebago, the benefits seem much more subjective. They invest their big supply of cash into a thriving business that [mostly] is not competing with their own products and get some luxury brand bragging rights, but it's difficult for me to see where there is any benefit to their design and manufacturing.  Dealers may benefit from carrying both brands, but they could do that before the merger simply by picking up the franchises they desired. Both companies franchise on a model-by-model basis, so dealers don't now get the whole Newmar line simply because they already carry some Winnebago lines. And they still deal with Newmar sales, service and warranty as separate entities.

The downside for Winnebago is the huge financial burden when RV industry sales inevitably go into the toilet during the next economic downturn. They have two companies (3 with Grand Design) to somehow keep afloat.  They've obviously forgotten 2009-2010. All three companies could go under if it is severe.

I agree.  What goes up, at some point comes down.  Lots of cash for Winnebago to sink in the the recreational industry.  Buying an RV usually comes after making the house payment.  :D
Title: Re: Winnebago purchases Newmar
Post by: Ray,IN on September 23, 2019, 07:33:50 PM
 The deal to purchase Newmar actually hasn't been completed yet, the deal should be completed in early 2020.  https://www.streetinsider.com/Globe+Newswire/Winnebago+Industries+to+Acquire+Premium+RV+Manufacturer+Newmar/15916174.html

Winnebago also owns Chris-Craft Industries. https://finance.yahoo.com/news/winnebago-industries-acquire-premium-rv-113000321.html