After a record-setting first quarter, Lippert Inc. President and CEO Jason Lippert said the supplier expects millions in market share gains in 2022.
Over the next 12 months, even as RV volumes slowed from first-quarter wholesale production, Jason Lippert said the company will add about $350 million in RV market share. Gains come from business closed in the past quarter, he said.
“That is a pretty significant improvement in gain, given that volume is coming down,” Jason Lippert said.
He attributed most of the market share gains to core products, including chassis, windows, furniture and Furrion products.
Jason Lippert said Furrion integration is making great headway.
“We are finding amazing ways to utilize the advanced appliance line up to bring bold new programs to our existing customer base,” he said. “Whether it is cameras or refrigerators or hot water heaters … we are going to continue to grow their aftermarket nicely. It is a good category, but we are still in early stages of getting everything in the catalogs, lined up and making sure all the channel customers know exactly what we’ve got to offer.”
Among the drivers behind Lippert’s record first quarter was a record wholesale RV manufacturing pace, the CEO said. He said manufacturers cranked out RVs at a 620,000-unit pace in the first quarter of 2022, pushing Lippert volumes higher. He said the supplier expects manufacturing pace to slow to a 525,000 run rate the rest of the year.
Jason Lippert said the industry remains on track for another strong year, despite recent slowness likely to continue the rest of the year. Retail demand is solid, he said, and Lippert is in constant communication with OEM and dealer partners to maintain appropriate production levels.
Automation investments drove efficiency in the first quarter, Lippert reported. Jason Lippert said as volume increased the past two years, automation helped the supplier grow by adding second and third shifts to current facilities rather than adding building capacity.
“This has allowed us to have a much more flexible cost structure that enables us to quickly adapt to any upward or downward swings and volume while helping us maintain solid levels of profitability,” he said.
Investments in culture and leadership development also paid off, Jason Lippert said, as the company’s retention rates grew significantly, reducing labor costs due to turnover.
Supply-chain challenges remains, particularly with renewed Asian lockdowns, he said. Jason Lippert said inventory levels are high, helping the supplier meet demand as volume diminishes in future quarters.
“As those things start to tail off, we will have some inventory there and a little bit of a cushion, so we should be sitting good,” he said. “Chips are the big headache for us right now. We are having to make changes there and redesign products along our electronics lineups. Other than that, things have been pretty decent.”