SOURCE: Wabash National Corporation

March 16, 2006 16:51 ET

Wabash National to Exit Domestic Container Market

LAFAYETTE, IN -- (MARKET WIRE) -- March 16, 2006 -- Wabash National Corporation (NYSE: WNC) today announced that the Company has decided it will withdraw from the domestic intermodal container market by March 31, 2006. The decision to exit this business will negatively impact first quarter pre-tax results by approximately $1.5 million, including approximately $1.0 million related to the write off of assets. Over the last three years, container sales have averaged less than 3.5 percent of annual unit volume and have been one the Company's lowest margin products.

The Company also noted that it expects new van trailer unit shipments in the first quarter of 2006 to be approximately 12,500, an increase of approximately 12 percent compared to the first quarter of 2005. Sales to core customers are expected to represent approximately 30 percent of units sold in the first quarter of 2006, more than double that of the 2005 quarter.

Commenting, Bill Greubel, Chief Executive Officer, stated, "It has become increasingly clear that corrugated steel boxes from China and Korea adequately satisfy customer requirements at prices significantly lower than our container offering. As a result, we have decided to focus our efforts on more rewarding opportunities." Mr. Greubel added that, "Customer pick-up units represent a higher than historical percentage of shippable equipment and is constraining first quarter volume. Van trailer quote and order activity remains strong, and orders currently represent approximately 70% of a targeted 60,000 units for 2006."

Headquartered in Lafayette, Ind., Wabash National® Corporation (NYSE: WNC) is one of the leading manufacturers of semi trailers in North America. Established in 1985, the company specializes in the design and production of dry freight vans, refrigerated vans, flatbed trailers, drop deck trailers, and intermodal equipment. Its innovative core products are sold under the DuraPlate®, ArcticLite®, and Eagle® brand names. The company operates two wholly owned subsidiaries; Transcraft® Corporation, a manufacturer of flatbed and drop deck trailers; and Wabash National Trailer Centers, a retail distributor of new and used trailers and aftermarket parts throughout the U.S. and Canada.

This press release contains certain forward-looking statements, as defined by the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These forward-looking statements are, however, subject to certain risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those implied by the forward-looking statements. Without limitation, these risks and uncertainties include increased competition, reliance on certain customers and corporate partnerships, shortages and costs of raw materials, continued improvements in our manufacturing capacity and cost containment, and dependence on industry trends. Readers should review and consider the various disclosures made by the Company in this press release and in its reports to its stockholders and periodic reports on Forms 10-K and 10-Q.

Contact Information

  • Press Contact:
    Tom Rodak
    Marketing and Communications Manager
    (765) 771-5535

    Investor Relations:
    (765) 771-5310