Goshen News, Goshen, IN

Business

May 7, 2014

Spartan Motors reports 1Q loss

Spartan Motors Inc. of Charlotte, Mich., which operates Utilimaster in Bristol, reported sales and a loss in its first quarter. Net sales were $128 million, up 33.2 percent from $96.1 million in the same quarter of 2013. Gross margin was 10 percent of sales vs. 6.6 in the 2013 quarter. The company’s loss was $3.5 million compared to loss of $6.8 million in the same quarter of 2013. John Sztykiel, Spartan’s chief executive officer, said, “In the first quarter of 2014, our DSV (delivery and service) and SCV (special chassis and vehicles) segments reported operating profits while we continued to improve the performance of our ER (emergency response) group. DSV reported a $2.6 million operating profit and continued on their path to operating cost reductions. SCV was profitable for the quarter despite the anticipated drop in defense-related aftermarket parts revenue, demonstrating our focus on disciplined execution.” 	 According to the company the divisional breakdown for the quarter was:• Delivery & Service profit of $2.6 million vs operating loss of $4 million• Emergency Response loss of $3.7 million vs. a loss of $2.6 million• Specialty chassis and vehicles profit of $0.6 million compared to profit of $1.3 millionThe company reported production of it’s “Reach” delivery van at the Bristol Utilimaster plant has been increasing.“First quarter 2014 revenue includes approximately $7 million in shipments of Reach units that were delayed from the fourth quarter of 2013 due to a component shortage,” the company stated. “Total revenues doubled compared to the first quarter of 2013 when Spartan was in the process of relocating walk-in van production from Wakarusa to Bristol, Indiana.” The company said 2,752 delivery and service vehicles were shipped during the first quarter with demand and production increasing throughout the quarter. This compares to 1,344 vehicles shipped during the first quarter of 2013, which reflects the relocation of walk-in van production, as well as lower truck body and Reach production in that quarter.Sztykiel said the Utilimaster move from an older production facility in Wakarusa to a newer factory in Bristol is beginning to pay dividends.“Today, the production cycle for a walk-in van is 3.8 days at Bristol vs. 16.4 days at Wakarusa at the beginning of 2013.”

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Poll

Three Goshen elementary schools — Chandler, Chamberlain and West Goshen — are providing free meals to all students during the school year as part of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Community Eligibility Provision of the Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010. Nearly 80 percent of students at Chandler, 89 percent of students at Chamberlain and 78 percent of students at West Goshen already qualify for free or reduced-price lunches based on their family income. How do you feel about the new lunch program?

I think it’s a good idea to feed all the students free of charge
I think those who can afford it should pay for their school meals
I think all students should be required to pay for their school meals
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