Thor Beats Estimates

The third quarter shows a 55% profit rise.
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Recreational-vehicle maker

Thor Industries

(THO) - Get Report

recorded a 55.2% jump in its third-quarter profit, helped by strength in its towables business and improved gross margins.

The company earned $51.1 million, or 90 cents a share, in the quarter ended April 30, compared with $32.9 million, or 58 cents a share, a year ago. Analysts polled by Thomson First Call expected earnings of 78 cents a share.

Third-quarter revenue rose 17.7% to $857.6 million from a year ago. Analysts were expecting revenue of $856 million in the most recent quarter.

"We continue to outperform the RV industry in both segments, motor homes and towables," the company said. "Our ongoing capital expenditures, process improvements, and plant expansions are yielding better products and quality, driving increased margins and setting Thor apart from RV competitors. We expect these positive trends to continue."

RV sales increased 17.2% to $776.6 million and bus sales increased 22.9% to $81 million.

Gross profit in the quarter increased 36.1% to $128 million, while gross profit margin increased 202 basis points to 14.9%. Towables income before tax was up 63%.

The company has a backlog of $698 million, up 53% from a year ago.

This story was created through a joint venture between and IRIS.