Who Owns Thor industries – 6 Facts You Should Know (Explained)

Who Owns thor industries

Have you ever wondered who owns Thor industries? Well, look no more. We´ve got you covered.

Thor Industries, Inc. designs, engineers, manufactures, and sells recreation vehicle products including travel trailers, fifth wheels, fold-out camping trailers, truck campers, and park models.

Thor also offers new replacement chassis for motor homes as well as sales of used RV’s through its subsidiary Forest River. Thor also builds travel trailers under the Airstream brand and Camping Cabins under the Dutchmen brand.

So, who owns Thor industries?  Wade Thompson and Peter Orthwein are the founders who started the business in 1980 with the purchase of Airstream. Today Thor Industries acquired others brands like Cruise RV, Dutchmen, Entegra and Jayco RV.

The original goal of Thor was to raise the bar and define new standards in the RV industry, and help people experience the joys of travel. Looking back 35 years, the goal has been accomplished. Today, Thor is one of the largest producers of high-end Class A motorhomes in history.

A leader in every major segment of the motorhome industry. The quality level set by Thor has become the benchmark for all competitors.

Who Owns Thor Industries?

Wade Thompson and Peter Orthwein are the founders who started the business in 1980 with the purchase of Airstream.

The acquisition included 45 trailer dealerships, some 200 service centers, and a manufacturing facility in Jackson Center, Ohio, where almost all of the company’s trailers were built. The dealerships, mostly located in small towns throughout North America, were losing money due to declining demand for new travel trailers. 

By leveraging its resources and THOR’s decades of experience in process improvement in the airframe manufacturing industry, Airstream has begun implementing lean initiatives throughout the company.

As a result, Airstream’s quality has improved so significantly that in its first year of operation under the new management team Airstream returned to profitability.

 How Did It All Start?

The success of the very first trailer manufactured by Thompson and Orthwein was due to the quality and reputation of the parent company. This same quality and reputation have propelled Airstream from its early days in Jackson Center, Ohio to a legitimate builder of world-class travel trailers and recreational vehicles.


Over the past decade, the company has expanded operations to include a nationwide network of independent dealers backed by a dedicated network of factory-trained service personnel.

Building on the Airstream name, Thompson, and Orthwein recognized potential in a then-unfilled niche within the recreational vehicle market.

The founders believed quality recreational vehicles could serve both personal and professional needs — and that those needs would grow as the cultural landscape shifted from the industrial to the information age.

Related reading: Who Owns Winnebago Industries: 7 Facts You Should Know (Explained)

Becoming a publicly traded company 

By 1986 Thor was listed on the New York stock exchange and was nominated amongst the 200 best small companies in America by Forbes Magazine!

Various acquisitions followed, developing Thor into the company it is now and increasing its RV brands to CrossRoads, Cruiser RV, Jayco, Dutchmen, and Starcraft.  

A full list of all Thor’s brands can be found here https://www.thorindustries.com/thor-companies

How did the company grow?

Thor always believed in people and clients. They define themselves as a “family of companies”, putting clients at the center.

Built to last a lifetime. That’s the goal for each RV from Coleman, Keystone, and Fleetwood – the three brands of RVs that make up Thor Industries.

The company is the largest manufacturer of RVs in North America and the only one with 100 years of hard-earned experience to ensure the quality and dependability built into every product made.

From small campers to big motorhomes, from weekend tent trailers to escape-size travel trailers, from lightweight Campers to towable utility trailers for your boat or ATV – Thor Industries has grown through acquisitions to be able to make them all. 

Their commitment to customers is to work with them to understand your needs and explain the RV that best suits your lifestyle. They will be with you through every step of the way, from your first phone call to the point where you rest assured – knowing that this is the right camper, and one that will last.

Thor’s Recent History

Three decades after creating a niche in the RV market, Thor Industries finally bought out the last of its major competitors. In December 2018, the company announced that it had agreed to acquire Jayco Inc., a York, Pennsylvania-based recreational vehicle (RV) manufacturer, for $1.53 billion in stock and cash.

Thor then grew to become the largest manufacturer in the world in 2019, after buying Hymer, a German manufacturer, and the largest in Europe. 

A family-owned company, Hymer began making motorhomes in the late 1960s. It has since become a leading global brand of recreational vehicles primarily for the European RV market and is one of the biggest producers of recreational vehicles in Europe.

With the acquisition, Thor has seen increased sales opportunities aftermarket, a lower cost of capital, and has been able to expand into new global markets. Their goal was to have Hymer run as an independent company with their current employees as much as possible. And Thor has not stopped even in these unprecedented times, by buying Tiffin Motorhomes, a luxury recreational vehicles manufacturer, for $300 Mln in December 2020.

What does Thor stand for?

As the industry-leading family of camping brands Thor is designed to make it easier and more enjoyable for families of all types to create lasting outdoor memories. They lead a global family of companies that make it faster, easier and more enjoyable for people to enjoy outdoor recreation – here and around the world.

THOR’s line of tents, trailers, sun shelters, sleeping bags, and other gear makes it easy to get out there and enjoy life under the sun.

They believe that spending time outdoors brings people closer together and creates lifelong memories. So, when your kids ask “Where can we go?” You can answer with confidence, Go Everywhere, and Stay Anywhere with THOR.

Withe their family of brands, Thor creates the excitement for travel and adventure, starting with a great place to stay, from campgrounds in some of the most beautiful and remote places on earth, to deluxe mountain resorts.  This family can connect you with nature and create lasting outdoor memories.

What are Thor’s values?

A leader in building the strength of both its customers and its employees, Thor’s corporate culture reflects the values of our founder, Wade F.B. Thompson. The mission is to build strong relationships with customers, employees, vendors, and shareholders.

Through the core values of financial accountability, dedication to people, quality engineering and integrity, Thor strives for success and leadership in the RV industry.

These values dictate how the company works, the way it does business and how every challenge is approached. When faced with a decision, our values are always the first thing to be considered.

Thor Industries’ family of companies started with a quest to create the best-made products for the RV market. As a family company, they have built on the values learnt from their parents and grandparents.

For example, experimentation, innovation, and curiosity all contributed to making this company great – and they provide the foundation for Thor’s values today. Thor believes in tackling complex problems, but always with forward-thinking knowledge of tradition and history. 

At its core, Thor is a family company that started over 75 years ago. People have come to know the high value and integrity that the Thor name represents and that has remained today. 




Mike Gilmour

Hi, I'm Mike, co-founder, and editor of RV and Playa. My passion is traveling (with my RV) and enjoying the day at the beach (Playa)! Well, I originally created this blog as a way to share what I've learned by experimenting with the RV lifestyle, and I want to help others develop in life through new skills and opportunities.

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