Spader dealers see double-digit gains through May


Christopher Gerber (
July 24, 2012
Filed under Features, Top Stories

After strong year-over-year sales growth slowed to 7.5 percent in April, sales at the average Spader dealership showed double-digit gains again in May, improving 10.2 percent year to date through May 31, according to the latest report from Spader Business Management.

Unit sales through May grew 9.2 percent. In fact, all departments experienced growth, with F&I, Service, P&A, and Other departments all up by double digits.

Strong sales of new boats contributed to the increase during the first five months of the year despite a drop in used unit sales. New boat unit sales were up 15.9 percent through May and non-boat unit sales were up 31 percent. 

Used unit sales had been down 12 percent through the end of April but improved slightly in May, dropping 4.6 percent in April, or roughly $26,000 less than 2011.

The average gross margin on new boats was one half of a percentage point higher through May of this year and used unit gross margins were up only slightly over the previous year.

Spending was up across all categories at the average dealership, with the largest increases coming in personnel and other variable expenses. Advertising expenses actually dropped through the end of May, down 4.3 percent from the previous year. Floorplan interest stayed relatively flat, changing around half of one percent through the end of the month.

Though expenses were up, the average dealer reported a Net Operating Profit of over $185,000 for the first five months of 2012, an increase of almost 70 percent compared to a Net Operating Profit of $109,602 during the same period of 2011.

Inventories were up as well, 13.6 percent higher than they were at the end of May 2011 for new units and 1.6 percent higher for used boats. 


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