Large dealers saw profits rise in 2003

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. – Out of the approximately 60 dealers tracked by Spader Cos., the majority reported an increase in total dealership sales in 2003, compared to 2002, the company reported in a recent statement.

The Spader report divides North American dealers into two categories: those doing under $5 million in business at retail and those doing over $5 million. Total dealership sales for the average small dealer were $3,451,571 in 2003, up 7.9 percent over the previous year, while larger dealerships’ total average sales were reported to be $10,953,739, up 2.8 percent from 2002, according to Spader.

Small dealers

New boat sales for the average small dealer rang up $2,071,722 in 2003, up 8.9 percent, while used boat sales were reported to be $361,146, up 17.2 percent over 2002, said Spader.

New boat inventories for the smaller dealers were up 14.7 percent to $1,028,281 compared to last year, while used boat inventories were down 2.1 percent to $88,757.

The market research firm also stated that net profit was $77,540, which is down 33.4 percent from last year, and as a percentage of sales is down 1.4 percentage points from last year to 2.2 percent. According to Spader, this is below survival net.

Spader reported that the total gross margin percent for smaller dealers was down 1.1 percentage points from a year ago to 29.8 percent, while total unit margin percent is up 0.4 percentage points to 18.7 percent compared to 2002.

Spending for 2003 was up by 9 percent, compared to last year, according to Spader.

Large dealers

New boat sales for the average large dealer were $6,771,649 for the year, up 1.3 percent, while used boat sales were reported at $1,298,766, up 15.9 percent from 2002, said Spader.

The large dealers’ new boat inventories were up 5.9 percent to $2,968,876. Used boat inventories were up 29.6 percent to $436,703.

The market research firm reported that net profit was up 71.4 percent to $460,596 or 4.2 percent of sales for the year, compared to a net profit that was 2.5 percent of sales a year ago.

Total gross margin was 28.1 percent, up 1.1 percentage points from last year, and while spending in terms of dollars remains nearly level with last year, with the increase in sales, the dollars spent represent almost 6 percent less of the gross margin, the report said.

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