ELKHART, Ind., June 3, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Thor Industries, Inc. (NYSE: THO) today announced expansion plans to support the ongoing growth of its businesses. Thor Wakarusa LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Thor Industries, purchased the recreational vehicle (RV) production campus in Wakarusa, Indiana that was formerly operated by Navistar International Corporation. The land and production facilities, including certain related equipment, are to be purchased from a company owned by New York-based American Industrial Partners (AIP).
Bob Martin, Thor President and Chief Operating Officer, commented, "This purchase marks an important step forward in the growth of our RV business. With this new production complex, we will be better positioned to achieve our long-term strategic growth initiatives. Even more compelling, this purchase will allow us to expand capacity faster and at a lower cost than other options. We are excited about the future prospects of reinvigorating the Wakarusa facilities."
The purchased facilities are comprised of nearly one million square feet of total production space located on more than 150 acres located in Wakarusa, Indiana. In addition to the production space, the complex includes more than 35 paint booths designed specifically for painting recreational vehicles. Initially, Thor plans to use the facilities for motorized production to better enable Thor Motor Coach to meet current and expected demand, and to vertically integrate paint operations through a facility operated by Thor's Keystone subsidiary. The facility includes space that offers the potential for additional production as well. Thor expects to finalize transition planning once the seller exits the facilities which is expected to occur late this summer.
Jeff Kime, President of Thor Motor Coach, commented, "We are pleased to add the Wakarusa facilities to our existing motorhome campus in Elkhart, as this significant increase in capacity will help us continue our rapid growth. We have been looking at a variety of options to meet the surging demand in the motorized RV market and purchasing the Wakarusa facility was an ideal solution to expand our motorhome production. In addition, it will enhance our ability to provide our outstanding dealer network with greater and more innovative products in the future."Matt Zimmerman, President of Keystone, commented, "This is an exciting time to be a Keystone dealer. The addition of 35 paint booths will ease some of the capacity constraints we are feeling with our current outside suppliers and provide ample opportunities to grow our business, particularly in higher end fifth wheels. The ability to provide enhanced full body paint on our product offerings should help us maintain and build on our industry leading position in the towable market. Most importantly, it will give our dealers another advantage over the competition." About Thor Industries, Inc.Thor is the sole owner of operating subsidiaries that, combined, represent the world's largest manufacturer of recreation vehicles and a major builder of commercial buses. This release includes certain statements that are "forward looking" statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended (the "Exchange Act"). These forward looking statements involve uncertainties and risks. There can be no assurance that actual results will not differ from our expectations. Factors which could cause materially different results include, among others, price fluctuations, material or chassis supply restrictions, legislative and regulatory developments, the costs of compliance with increased governmental regulation, legal issues, the potential impact of increased tax burdens on our dealers and retail consumers, lower consumer confidence and the level of discretionary consumer spending, the level of state and federal funding available for transportation, interest rate increases, restrictive lending practices, recent management changes, the success of new product introductions, the pace of acquisitions, asset impairment charges, cost structure improvements, competition and general economic conditions and the other risks and uncertainties discussed more fully in Item 1A of our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended July 31, 2012 and Part II, Item 1A of our Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the period ended January 31, 2013. We disclaim any obligation or undertaking to disseminate any updates or revisions to any forward looking statements contained in this release or to reflect any change in our expectations after the date of this release or any change in events, conditions or circumstances on which any statement is based, except as required by law. SOURCE Thor Industries, Inc.