Winnebago Industries Inc. provided an update on additional actions the company is taking in response to the COVID-19 pandemic including its manufacturing operations and ongoing cost containment and financial management initiatives.
Each business within Winnebago Industries currently continues to perform essential activities for its dealers and end customers, including remote retail support for dealers along with technical care, warranty administration and parts fulfillment. In addition, the Company intends to resume production at certain of its locations beginning the week of April 13. The following high-level overview of production resumption plans is subject to change as the company will continue to evaluate the operating environment and guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the World Health Organization (WHO) and state and federal governments:
- Chris-Craft – week of April 13
- Specialty Vehicles – week of April 13
- Newmar – week of May 4
- Grand Design RV – week of May 4
- Winnebago Motorhomes – week of May 4
- Winnebago Towables – week of May 18
As the company resumes operations in select areas, all employees are required to adhere to applicable safety protocols whether working physically on campus or offsite. Winnebago Industries is taking additional precautions to ensure the safety of its employees including, but not limited to, appropriate social distancing measures, strict sanitization practices and daily employee health checks.
Since the beginning of the COVID-19 crisis, Winnebago Industries has implemented significant cost containment and financial management measures. The company continues to take appropriate steps to maintain and enhance its financial flexibility including the following preemptive actions tailored to each business unit and enterprise function related to hourly and salaried employees:
- Reductions including furloughs and layoffs
- Pay adjustments
- Contractor reductions
Impacted production employees working in business units with return dates after April 13 will not be extended wage payments during time off but will be provided medical and dental insurance benefits during this unpaid leave. The company will pay the employee’s portion of the medical and dental insurance premiums through the end of April. Any voluntary benefit premium will be the responsibility of the employee.
“The coronavirus pandemic continues to create a very challenging economic environment for the industries in which we compete. Our top priorities during these uncertain times remain the health of our employees and the financial stability of our company,” said Winnebago Industries President and CEO Michael Happe. “Several weeks ago we announced a temporary suspension of most production activities. Following that decision, we have continued to monitor the health crisis and its related financial impact on our end customers, channel partners, and suppliers, so that we could determine a reasonable time to return to work safely. In addition, we have continued to take the financial management steps we believe are necessary to ensure the strength of our business long-term. Finally, despite these challenging times, we are confident the outdoor recreation industry will rebound in the future, and as such, we will carefully activate our leading brands and sound strategies against available demand as it gradually recovers.”
Photo courtesy Winnebago/AP