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BIKE BOOSTER SURPRISE FOR YAMAHA

Yamaha’s profits were hammered in the first quarter of its 2020 fiscal year. And for once, motorcycles weren’t primarily the culprits. BDN financial editor Roger Willis reports.

Certainly, its motorcycle business was on the back foot as Covid-19 consequences crept into view. But not dramatically. Total revenue fell by 6.3% to £1.74bn on global sales volume 10.1% down to 1.123 million bikes. 

Asia was largely responsible for both retreats, with turnover sinking by 8.8% to £1.1bn and a unit sales decline of 11.2% to 938,000. European operations, on the other hand, did much better, posting a 0.8% revenue increase to £280m while selling only 2% fewer bikes at 50,000. And Japanese domestic turnover stacked on 14.5% to £71m, despite flat volume of 21,000.

Elsewhere, North America suffered a 16.1% revenue decrease to £70m and sales 27.8% down to 13,000. Revenue also dropped by 4.3% to £219m across other markets combined, including Australia, New Zealand and Latin America, although volume was static at 101,000 machines.

Yamaha’s Land Mobility division, which is almost completely dominated by motorcycles, saw quarterly revenue drop by 6.8% to £1.95bn and operating profit a comparatively modest 7.5% lower at £64m.

However, for the Yamaha group as a whole, this picture grew progressively uglier. A 7.8% drop in overall revenue to £2.97bn didn’t sound too bad. But operating profit was 29.2% down to £190m and net profit plummeted by 66.1% to just £72m.    

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