OneWater Marine scaled back its presence at the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show, experienced some challenging weather, and yet, still had stronger sales than at last year's show, helping the company achieve record revenue in 2020, said president and COO Anthony Aisquith.
“Additionally, we saw sales increase in the weeks leading up to and following the show at certain locations since many customers shopped locally versus traveling to Fort Lauderdale,” said Aisquith on a call with investors and analysts to discuss fourth quarter and fiscal 2020 results. “This is a testament to our ability to leverage our highly effective digital platforms to maintain our momentum.”
The company will roll out a new digital platform, boatsforsale.com, a site that’s in beta testing now, said OneWater CEO Austin Singleton.
“Optimistically, I would say before the end of the year, but I think it's going to be into the first quarter of next year before we get it out,” said Singleton. “It's very, very important that when we roll it out that everything worked perfectly on it because if you roll it out and it doesn't work, right, then it might kind of die in the water. And that's not what we want, so we're running it internally right now and having all the sales guys use the tools that we'll be rolling out in this first phase. So that when we do roll it out, it's a flawless execution. Conservatively, I think we're still 60 days before it rolls out.”
The company attributed its 33 increase in revenue, which passed the $1 billion mark for the first time in OneWater history, to its “industry-leading digital platform, along with our dynamic pricing strategy…,” said Singleton.
Inventories remain at historically low levels, but they have begun to build since the end of the fourth quarter, he said.
“Despite supply chain constraints cited by OEMs in recent weeks, we do expect inventories to build further throughout the slower winter months, setting us up for a fresh lineup of inventory for the spring selling season,” said Singleton. “Our strong OEM relationships are a differentiator, and our inventory planning tools allow us to have a great visibility into boats on order or in production. This enables us to engage with the customers and pre-sell inventory that is inbound to all locations, creating an enormous savings on floor plan interest, inventory maintenance and general carrying costs.”
The company also reported 41 percent in finance and insurance revenue, which will remain a focus as part of OneWater’s strategy to focus on high margin businesses.
“We remain committed to expanding this line of business and identifying opportunities to increase penetration rates, and the number and types of products that are available to our customers,” said Aisquith.