Coachmen Industries Inc. is selling its Prodesign LLC thermoforming unit as part of a restructuring effort.
The recreational vehicle and modular-home building company expects to complete the sale of the Elkhart, Ind.-based Prodesign to an investment group sometime in its fourth quarter, executives noted in an Oct. 25 conference call. The company has not disclosed the buyer or the expected purchase price.
Elkhart-based Coachmen also has put Miller Building Systems Inc., its commercial building subsidiary, on the block as part of a corporate overhaul that also includes divesting dealerships, consolidating manufacturing and cutting its salaried workforce by 13 percent.
``Actions are being taken to right-size the business,'' Chief Executive Officer Claire Skinner said. ``They will have long-lasting, long-term effects.''
Coachmen saw an operating loss of $17.5 million on sales of $198 million for its third quarter ended Sept. 30. A year earlier it posted operating profit of $8.7 million on sales of $232.3 million. For the first nine months of the year, Coachman has seen an operating loss of $23.1 million on sales of $612.1 million, down from profit of $16.8 million on sales of $660.9 million in 2004.
Prodesign generates sales of $14 million, with three plants and 180 employees. The sale covers its thermoforming unit and paint line, both in Elkhart. It makes some RV products including front and rear caps, and also molds bath and shower components, marine industry dashboards and automotive aftermarket products such as ground-effect exterior trim parts and truck tonneau covers.
Selling the unit will allow Coachmen to focus on RV and modular building industries, Skinner said. ``We are re-engineering the company,'' she said.
The RV industry suffered a slowdown this year as fuel prices climbed, executives noted. Coachmen also suffered through warranty issues that cost it more than $6 million in the quarter.
The rebuilding effort from hurricane damage in the South should help the company recover, though. Coachman already has confirmed orders for 3,000 travel trailers set for delivery in the fourth quarter, worth about $30 million in sales. Coachmen's housing and building group also has orders for $4 million in structures to be used as temporary medical clinics, banks and construction contractors' offices.