ELKHART, Ind., Dec. 7, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- THOR Industries, Inc. (NYSE:THO) today announced the acquisition of Elkhart, Indiana-based Elkhart Composites, Inc. by THOR's Airxcel, Inc. subsidiary. Elkhart Composites is engaged in the development and sale of a proprietary sustainable foamed polypropylene-based composite material marketed and sold under the "Elkboard" brand name. Lightweight, rigid, and durable, Elkboard is used in the RV industry for sidewalls, helping to alleviate the industry's dependence on traditional lauan-based sidewalls. Unlike traditional lauan-based sidewalls, Elkboard is a sustainable solution and is not susceptible to rot or delamination.
"We are excited about this acquisition for so many different reasons." said Bob Martin, THOR President and CEO. "First, Elkboard is a far more sustainable solution than traditional lauan-based sidewalls. For decades, the RV industry has sourced lauan wood from tropical hardwood forests which continue to be over-harvested. As the recent supply-chain constraints have demonstrated, sourcing such materials from the other side of the world can no longer be taken for granted and our ability to quality-control lauan product is severely limited. Elkboard, on the other hand, is sustainable, and is fabricated locally. Strict quality oversight allows a great deal of consistency we cannot find in lauan-based product. Second, Elkboard is an innovative and superior product already utilized in many of our RV offerings. Its current use in sidewalls is only the beginning for this product. With additional R&D investment into the Elkboard product, we expect it can be utilized as a solution in several other RV applications. Third, the growth potential of Elkboard is exponential. Our companies have been purchasing 100% of the Elkboard produced but that number has only supported a fraction of the RVs we produce. THOR and Airxcel have already committed to making capital investments into Elkboard to expand its production capacity to a multiple of its current production capacity. Fourth, this is the first opportunity for us to continue to build on our recent Airxcel acquisition and the strategy that drove that acquisition."
"John Petrofsky and his Elkboard product presented a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for Airxcel to enter the ground floor of a new and exciting business." added Jeff Rutherford, President and CEO of THOR subsidiary Airxcel, Inc. "We are excited to have John join our team and look forward to growing this great business in the years to come."
John Petrofsky, Elkhart Composites' President and CEO, commented, "As the demand for the Elkboard product began to outpace my ability to produce it, I began looking for the right partner to assist in expanding the production and utilization of Elkboard. While I had numerous suitors, THOR and Airxcel were the most natural fit. THOR's embrace of sustainable technologies and products combined with its focus on innovation made it the right choice for the company. THOR's leadership has believed in the potential of Elkboard product since our first introduction, and I look forward to growing Elkhart Composites, Inc.'s product offerings, production volume, and applications with Airxcel."
About THOR Industries, Inc.
THOR Industries is the sole owner of operating subsidiaries that, combined, represent the world's largest manufacturer of recreational vehicles. For more information on the Company and its products, please go to www.thorindustries.com.
This release includes certain statements that are "forward-looking" statements within the meaning of the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. These forward-looking statements are made based on management's current expectations and beliefs regarding future and anticipated developments and their effects upon THOR, and inherently involve uncertainties and risks. These forward-looking statements are not a guarantee of future performance. We cannot assure you that actual results will not differ materially from our expectations. Factors which could cause materially different results include, among others: the extent and impact from the continuation of the COVID-19 pandemic, along with the responses to contain the spread of the virus, or its variants, by various governmental entities or other actors, which may have negative effects on retail customer demand, our independent dealers, our supply chain, our labor force, our production or other aspects of our business; the ability to ramp production up or down quickly in response to rapid changes in demand while also managing costs and market share; the effect of raw material and commodity price fluctuations, and/or raw material, commodity or chassis supply constraints; the dependence on a small group of suppliers for certain components used in production; the level and magnitude of warranty and recall claims incurred; the ability of our suppliers to financially support any defects in their products; legislative, regulatory and tax law and/or policy developments including their potential impact on our dealers and their retail customers or on our suppliers; the costs of compliance with governmental regulation; public perception of and the costs related to environmental, social and governance matters; legal and compliance issues including those that may arise in conjunction with recently completed transactions; lower consumer confidence and the level of discretionary consumer spending; interest rate fluctuations and their potential impact on the general economy and, specifically, on our dealers and consumers; the impact of exchange rate fluctuations; restrictive lending practices which could negatively impact our independent dealers and/or retail consumers; management changes; the success of new and existing products and services; the ability to maintain strong brands and develop innovative products that meet consumer demands; the ability to efficiently utilize existing production facilities; changes in consumer preferences; the risks associated with acquisitions, including: the pace and successful closing of an acquisition, the integration and financial impact thereof, the level of achievement of anticipated operating synergies from acquisitions, the potential for unknown or understated liabilities related to acquisitions, the potential loss of existing customers of acquisitions and our ability to retain key management personnel of acquired companies; a shortage of necessary personnel for production and increasing labor costs to attract production personnel in times of high demand; the loss or reduction of sales to key dealers; disruption of the delivery of units to dealers; increasing costs for freight and transportation; asset impairment charges; competition; the impact of potential losses under repurchase agreements; the potential impact of the strength of the U.S. dollar on international demand for products priced in U.S. dollars; general economic, market and political conditions in the various countries in which our products are produced and/or sold; the impact of changing emissions and other related climate change regulations in the various jurisdictions in which our products are produced, used and/or sold; changes to our investment and capital allocation strategies or other facets of our strategic plan; and changes in market liquidity conditions, credit ratings and other factors that may impact our access to future funding and the cost of debt.
These and other risks and uncertainties are discussed more fully in Item 1A of our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended July 31, 2021.
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 hereof or any change in events, conditions or circumstances on which any statement is based,
except as required by law.
Mark Trinske, Vice President of Investor Relations
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SOURCE THOR Industries, Inc.