As Camping World Holdings pivots away from outdoor retail and as the RV market continues to sputter, the Lincolnshire, Ill.-based company sees the sale of used RVs as a logical path forward for the business, according to Chairman and CEO Marcus Lemonis.
Used RV sales grew 14.6 percent in the company’s recently completed third quarter, well outpacing new RV sales (down 4.7 percent) and boosting overall RV sales to a 1.3 percent increase. Used vehicle inventory was up $42 million while new vehicle inventory was down about $127 million in the quarter.
This story originally appeared in SGB Media.
“We’re going to continue to destock where we think it’s appropriate in certain segments on the new side, particularly on the motorized side, and reinvest those dollars in continuing to grow our used business,” Lemonis said on the recent earnings conference call with analysts.
Used sales stood out in other areas of the earnings report. Companywide, average selling price (ASP) per vehicle unit sold increased 2.3 percent to $32,383, while new vehicle ASP increased 2.4 percent to $36,613 per unit and used vehicle ASP increased 9 percent to $24,565 per unit.
Also, same-store vehicle units sold decreased 8 percent to 24,285 units, but it could have been much worse. New vehicle same-store units sold decreased 14.7 percent to 15,553 units while used vehicle same-store units sold increased 6.9 percent to 8,732 units.
Now the company has shed further light on that plan, of which used RVs are integral. Specifically, Camping World’s used inventory is “up substantially” to around $170 million—all of it company-owned, Lemonis added—with the plan for that number to grow, in part, because used sales bring higher margins for Camping World.
The move is both strategic and opportunistic for Camping World, which is also dealing with some RV industry headwinds. But Camping World’s used inventory provides a nice growth niche as a way for customers to more affordably get into the RV lifestyle.
All told, Camping World sees used RVs as a way to satisfy customer demand, grow margins and increase inventor turns in store lots.
When asked about sourcing for Camping World’s used inventory, Lemonis said the company has targeted three areas in addition to the most common one of trade-ins, which account for roughly half of the used inventory. Other than that, Camping World has gotten strategic as it looks to procure RVs to resell.