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Nov. 30, 2009 – Finance Digest

November 30, 2009
Filed under Features

Honda’s cycle sales fall 54 percent
Honda’s North American powersports unit sales fell in its most recent quarter and continues to lag behind its 2008 levels.
Honda said its motorcycle segment sales, which includes motorcycles, ATVs and PWC, totaled 43,000 units for North America for its fiscal second quarter. That is a nearly 54 percent drop from a year ago. For its fiscal first half, Honda has sold 97,000 motorcycles, ATVs and PWC in its North American market, a decline of 44 percent from the year-ago period. Honda said its ATV sales continue to outpace the industry through the second quarter and its sport bikes were strong in September. The company also said it continues to reduce both its and its dealers’ inventories to better align them with current consumer demand.
For just its motorcycle units, Honda’s North American first-half sales have totaled 53,000, a 44 percent drop from a year ago. That percentage is in line with the industry as a whole, which through September was down 44 percent for two-wheel retail sales.
Honda also is reporting reduced two-wheel sales in Europe. Sales there have fallen nearly 35 percent in Honda’s first half to 99,000 units.
Overall, the company had net sales of $44.9 billion in its fiscal first half, a reduction of nearly 29 percent from a year ago. Honda’s net income in that period was $683 million, a decline of 79 percent from the 2008 first half.

Suzuki’s North American sales drop significantly
Suzuki’s North American powersports unit sales declined 40 percent in its most recent fiscal quarter, the company recently announced.
Suzuki’s wholesale total of motorcycle and ATV sales amounted to 40,000 units for the United States and Canada, a decline from 67,000 units during the April-September timeframe of a year ago.
The company’s European motorcycle segment sales dropped even further as Suzuki shipped 46,000 units, a decline of nearly 49 percent.

Kawasaki’s North American sales decline 37 percent
Kawasaki Heavy Industries (KHI), the parent company of Kawasaki Motors Corp. U.S.A., reported a 40 percent decline in sales for its division that includes powersports products.
KHI reported sales of $1.17 billion for the first half of its fiscal year for its Consumer Products and Machinery division, which includes powersports vehicles.
Overall, the company’s sales have declined 21 percent to $5.7 billion.
KHI said its overall North American market sales declined 37 percent from the year-ago period. Even though the company’s North American operations have reduced its operating expenses by 35.5 percent compared to a year ago, the company wound up with a $24 million operating loss.
Overall, the company reported a net loss of $69.7 million for its fiscal first half.

Yamaha’s two-wheel sales stay above the industry as a whole
Yamaha’s motorcycle sales in North America fell less than the industry as whole, according to the company’s recent earnings report.
Yamaha’s North American motorcycle unit sales totaled 81,000 for its first nine months of its fiscal year, dating back to Jan. 1. That’s a 31 percent drop from the year-ago period. The industry as a whole for two-wheel sales declined nearly 44 percent during that timeframe.
Yamaha has seen a much bigger drop for its North American power products division, which includes ATVs and UTVs. Sales in that division have declined 65 percent compared to the year-ago period.
The company’s marine product sales in North America also have seen a falloff. Sales there have dropped 45 percent.

Piaggio’s U.S. sales decline follows industry as a whole
The Piaggio Group’s U.S. sales for its first three fiscal quarters have fallen more than 40 percent compared to a year ago, the company recently reported.
Piaggio’s sales in the United States are down nearly 44 percent through its third quarter. The U.S. market, as reported by the Motorcycle Industry Council, shows new unit sales down nearly 44 percent for the two-wheel market.
Overall the company’s two-wheeler sales are down nearly 13 percent as revenue has declined in key areas of Europe but significantly increased in its Asia-Pacific area.
Overall, the company sold more than 475,000 vehicles, with more than 332,000 coming in the two-wheel market. The Piaggio Group’s overall vehicle sales decreased approximately 12 percent from the year-ago period.

Easton-Bell’s powersports segment sales dip slightly
Easton-Bell Sports, the manufacturer behind Bell Powersports, reported little change in its sales segment that includes powersports.
That segment had net sales of $1.6 million in the most recent quarter, a nearly 2 percent decrease from the year-ago quarter.
Overall, the company had net sales of $180.4 million, a decline of 11 percent compared to a year-ago.
The company said it had lower sales of OEM cycling components, cycling accessories and powersports helmets. Those declines were partially offset by increased sales of snow sports helmets and cycling gloves.
For its first three quarters, the company’s overall sales are down nearly 9 percent to $552.5 million. The company’s net income for both the third quarters of fiscal 2009 and 2008 was $6.3 million.

ARI grows its revenue over last fiscal year
Acquisitions and new product helped ARI grow its revenue in its fiscal year, the company recently reported.
ARI’s year-end fiscal sales totaled $17.6 million, a 4 percent rise over the previous year.
The Milwaukee-based company’s net income, however, dropped significantly from a year ago. ARI’s net income was $424,000 compared to net income of $1.4 million for fiscal 2008.
“Fiscal 2009 was a good year for ARI. We increased revenues, remained profitable and successfully completed two acquisitions, all within a challenging economic environment,” said Roy Olivier, president and CEO of ARI. “We generated $2.7 million in cash from operations for the year, which we used for the two acquisitions, investments in equipment and software development and for the repayment of debt and capital lease obligations.”
ARI purchased Channel Blade Technologies Corp., and the finance and insurance assets of Powersports Outsourcing Group during the past year.
Catalog revenues benefited from the July 2008 acquisition of InfoAccess, an electronic parts catalog business. “Recurring revenues remained consistent at over 90 percent renewals for our two core product lines, WebsiteSmartPro and PartSmart,” said Olivier.
Cooper Tire sales, net income sees gain over year-ago quarter Cooper Tire, which includes motorcycle brand Avon Tyres, reported a slight increase in sales for its most recent quarter.
Cooper Tire had net sales of $803 million, an increase of 1 percent over a year ago.
The company’s quarterly net income was $47 million, a $102 million improvement over the year-ago quarter. The improved results were driven by lower raw material costs and supported by the company’s continued manufacturing improvements and improved utilization of capacity, Cooper Tire said.
During the quarter, the company ceased production at its Albany, Ga., facility, incurring related restructuring costs of $13 million.
The company’s North American Tire operations sales were $574 million, down slightly from 2008 net sales of $586 million.

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