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Harley-Davidson increasing sales through innovation, quality, analyst says

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December 11, 2012
Filed under News, Top Stories

Harley-Davidson is “increasing sales through innovation and quality products, and attracting new riders and broadening its customer base,” according to a research note provided to Powersports Business by BMO Capital Markets analyst Gerrick Johnson.

Johnson published the report following a recent meeting with Harley-Davidson CEO Keith Wandell and CFO John Olin.

Johnson reports that “management’s ‘overarching message continues to be about, ‘transforming the company in very meaningful ways to be stronger going forward.’”

Wandell’s four keys to the company’s transformation are as follows, the report says: transforming the manufacturing process to be more flexible, cost effective, and closer to the customer; continuing to invest in superior, industry-leading product development and design; providing a clear vision as to what retail should look like to offer a customized customer experience; and investing in information technology on a global basis to execute the strategy.

As part of the report, management also commented on its recent implementation of SAP at Harley-Davidson’s largest manufacturing plant in York, Pa., which required the shutdown of 40 percent of production in July and ruffled some investor feathers.

Wandell called the move “likely the single most successful SAP implementation and launch in a business this size, in history.”

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