Wabash narrows losses in 2002

Though financially troubled trailer maker Wabash National Corp. reduced its losses in 2002, the company does not believe it can return to profitability in 2003, and hopes to instead renegotiate new terms with its lenders. For 2002, Lafayette, IN-based Wabash said it lost $56.1 million on revenues of $819.5 million, down from $232.1 million in losses on revenues of $863.3 million in 2001. For the fourth

Though financially troubled trailer maker Wabash National Corp. reduced its losses in 2002, the company does not believe it can return to profitability in 2003, and hopes to instead renegotiate new terms with its lenders.

For 2002, Lafayette, IN-based Wabash said it lost $56.1 million on revenues of $819.5 million, down from $232.1 million in losses on revenues of $863.3 million in 2001. For the fourth quarter, Wabash said it lost $11.6 million on revenues of $205.8 million, compared to losses of $134.9 million on revenues of $166.6 million in the same period of 2001.

The company added that it paid down $100 million in debt last year, a reducing its outstanding debt by 22%.

President & CEO William Greubel said industry conditions continue to be depressed due to overall economic activity and trucking conditions, but are beginning to show some signs of improvement.

Greubel said Wabash is in discussions with the company's lenders regarding its performance, debt load and related financial covenants and hopes to have new credit terms in place by March 31.

In the event the discussions are not successful, Greubel said there will be a profound impact on the company's 2002 balance sheet because it will need to record various debt obligations totaling about $347 million.

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