Sunday, April 21, 2024


An amazing turnaround for Kawasaki’s motorcycle division has seen it become the biggest revenue and profit generator for the entire KHI group, according to half-year results. BDN financial editor Roger Willis reports.

Revenue for the April-September 2021 period grew by 48% to £1.354bn, a total that was also 40.5% higher than the equivalent six months in pre-pandemic 2019. This equated to almost a third of Kawasaki Heavy Industries’ overall turnover.

Motorcycle income from developed countries, led by Europe and North America, rose by 61.6% to £515m. Bikes for emerging markets in Asia and Latin America put on 73.9% to £297m. Utility vehicles, ATVs and personal watercraft contributed £318m, an 8.5% improvement. General-purpose petrol engines, mostly destined for North America, were 70.5% up, adding £224m.

Wholesale motorcycle volume in developed markets climbed by 50.8% to 92,000. Notably, US orders more than doubled to 38,000 and Europe was 17.9% up at 33,000. But Australia flatlined. In emerging markets, numbers were 47.6% up to 124,000. The Philippines were 25% higher at 65,000, sales almost trebled to 21,000 in Indonesia and they doubled to 20,000 in China.

Divisional operating profit reached £122m, against respective losses of £34m and £22m in the first halves of the previous two fiscal years. And motorcycle profit represented the vast majority — 91.1% — of KHI earnings before interest and tax. Its aerospace, energy and marine engineering operations all lost money.

Responding to such excellent performance, the division’s second-half and full-year revenue forecasts have been respectively raised to £1.526bn and £2.88bn, the latter increasing by about £200m.

Although the results overview said strong demand is expected to continue, especially for two and four-wheeled off-roaders in the US, qualification factors included supply-chain risks of parts shortages, principally semiconductors, and logistics disruption.    


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