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DUCATI STAYS IN PROFIT

Naturally, Ducati’s German parent Volkswagen Group blamed horrendous overall losses in the first half of 2020 on the pandemic. But its Italian motorcycle subsidiary wasn’t a red-ink contributor. BDN financial editor Roger Willis reports.

Ducati revenue in the period was 23.9% down to £299.1m. Operating margin declined to 5.4% from 12.9% in the equivalent six months last year, as operating profit plummeted by 67.9% to £16.3m — still an admirable result in the current commercial climate.

The global over-500cc market in which Ducati resides sank by 14.7%, with a considerably more significant reversal in Europe. And the brand was far behind that average, its total retail bike sales volume sinking by 24.2% to 24,032. 

However, the premium-priced sporting segment occupied by Panigale and Supersports models only deteriorated by 13.1% to 5397. Naked machines encompassing Monster, Diavel and Streetfighter products were just 7.9% lower on 7409. Most pain was reserved for dual-sport Multistrada and Hypermotard tackle, which dived by 38.1% to 6496. Scramblers also took a severe hit, falling by 32.1% to 4730.

Best news was that sales volume bounced back in June, 9.8% up year-on-year, as dealers escaped lockdown and began to satisfy latent demand. The downside came with a 30.5% drop in six-monthly production to 24,157 bikes, an inventory shortfall of more than 10,000, potentially threatening a showroom stock famine if recovery gathers pace. 

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