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Running on All Cylinders

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Brunswick Corp. continued to reap the benefits of strong demand across all its business segments, reporting a record first quarter with net sales of $1.43 billion, a 48.4 percent increase compared with the same quarter last year.

“Our business had a fantastic start to 2021,” CEO David Foulkes said, “with a very healthy marine market, strong boating participation and outstanding operating performance driving historic financial results.”

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While each of its segments saw double-digit growth for the quarter, the top performer was the propulsion segment, filing $657.8 million in sales — a 47 percent increase compared with the year prior. The company introduced the industry’s largest outboard in February — the V-12 600-hp Mercury engine — and said it continued to gain market share in every segment higher than 50 hp, with the most substantial movement in engines over 200 hp.

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Brunswick’s boat brands also had a record quarter, posting double-digit operating margins for the first time in more than two decades. The division had $420 million in sales, a 44 percent increase from the first quarter of 2020.

Parts and accessories were up 52.4 percent with $459.6 million in sales, showing growth across all businesses in all geographic regions and robust aftermarket sales driven by the increased participation in boating.

Freedom Boat Club contributed approximately 2 percent of sales to the boat segment in the quarter, the company said, as it continued to expand, buying franchises and growing its international footprint.

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Brunswick said it has increased production and is working to manage historically low pipeline levels because of continued strong demand.

“Our production plans for the year remain on track, [and] our outstanding performance in a healthy marine market is further evidence of our ability to continue to successfully execute our marine strategy,” Foulkes said.

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