The Engineered Materials segment made two acquisitions in 2006 and 2007 that expanded its fiberglass reinforced plastic (FRP) offerings to include a high gloss product. With the recreational vehicle (RV) market experiencing softness, the short-term opportunity for Engineered Materials lies in increasing its share of an estimated $500 million market, now that it has both a high gloss and conventional product. As the most comprehensive supplier of FRP to the RV industry and with the most technological expertise, the Engineered Materials segment expects to be able to capture an increasing share of the towable and higher-end Class A and Class C segments of the market.
The recent acquisitions included a state-of-the-art technical center, where engineers work on developing new FRP materials that will further enhance appearance and usability for RV, truck trailer and building industry customers. The segment’s technical expertise should enable it to grow over the long term by partnering with its customers to develop new solutions that meet their specific needs. In addition, the RV market, which is currently experiencing softness, is expected to resume its uptrend as more and more baby boomers enter the highest-purchasing age range.
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