RV Dealers

Industry Profile Report

Dive Deep into the industry with a 25+ page industry report (pdf format) including the following chapters

Industry Overview Current Conditions, Industry Structure, How Firms Operate, Industry Trends, Credit Underwriting & Risks, and Industry Forecast.

Call Preparation Call Prep Questions, Industry Terms, and Weblinks.

Financial Insights Working Capital, Capital Financing, Business Valuation, and Financial Benchmarks.

Industry Profile Excerpts

Industry Overview

The 2,800 recreational vehicle dealerships in the US sell new and used RVs, replacement parts, accessories, and services. Dealers may provide rental services for RVs and also earn fees for facilitating financing and insurance purchases through third party providers.

Seasonal Sales

Summer is the peak season for RV travel and demand drops quickly in the late fall/winter.

Vulnerability to Economic Conditions

The RV industry as a whole is vulnerable to downturns in the economy.

Industry size & Structure

The average recreational vehicle dealer operates out of a single location, employs 20-21 workers, and generates $9 million in annual revenue.

    • The RV dealer industry consists of 2,800 establishments that employ about 57,000 workers and generate over $26 billion annually.
    • The industry is relatively fragmented, as the top 50 companies account for about 47% of industry revenue.
    • Camping World (Freedom Roads) is the largest RV dealer in the US with over 180 locations. Most companies are small and serve a limited geographical market.
                              Industry Forecast
                              RV Dealers Industry Growth
                              Source: Vertical IQ and Inforum

                              Recent Developments

                              Apr 15, 2024 - Slower Growth Expected for Industry
                              • The US RV dealer industry is projected to grow at a CAGR of 1.8% between 2024 and 2028, according to a forecast from Inforum and the Interindustry Economic Research Fund, Inc. The expected growth rate is slower than the overall economy's projected growth. Factors that continue to limit spending are higher price levels and interest rates, though both are expected to improve in 2024. Post-pandemic, consumer spending has shown slower gains of 2.5% in 2022 and 2.2% in 2023, supported in part by savings amassed by households from federal pandemic relief programs. According to the forecast, "2024 may bring further deceleration, but improving consumer sentiment may support moderately strong gains in household spending, together with rising wage rates and lower inflation."
                              • The National Retail Federation (NRF) released its 2024 retail sales forecast, projecting an increase of approximately between 2.5% and 3.5%, reaching sales of between $5.23 trillion and $5.28 trillion. The projected growth aligns with the 10-year pre-pandemic average annual sales growth of 3.6% and compares with the 2023 annual sales growth of 3.6%, which reached $5.1 trillion. Non-store and online sales (included in the total figure) are expected to grow at a higher rate of 7% to 9% year over year, to a range of $1.47 to $1.5 trillion, compared to $1.38 trillion in 2023. A tight labor market is expected to cool in 2024, with about 100,000 fewer jobs on average per month projected in 2024 compared to 2023. The NRF forecast excludes automobile dealers, gas stations, and restaurants to focus on core retail.
                              • Consumer confidence levels were essentially unchanged in March 2024, after a dip in February 2024 following three consecutive months of growth, according to data from The Conference Board. The Conference Board’s consumer confidence index was 104.7 in March 2024 from 104.8 in February 2024. According to Dana Peterson, Chief Economist at The Conference Board, “Consumers’ assessment of the present situation improved in March, but they also became more pessimistic about the future.” Peterson added that confidence rose among householders 55 and over but fell for those under 55. Plans to purchase homes, autos, and large appliances decreased slightly on a six-month basis.
                              • RV shipments increased for the third consecutive month in January 2024 compared to the same period in the previous year, according to a report in RV PRO. January shipments increased to 22,674, which was 11% higher than January 2023. The uptick is a positive sign for the industry, which faced challenges in 2022 and 2023 due to falling consumer demand and rising interest rates. The towables category saw the highest growth in January 2023 year over year, with a 21% increase. However, expensive motorhomes saw a decline of 25% in January 2024 compared to January 2023.
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