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TEAM GREEN LANGUISHES IN THE RED

Loss-making throughout its previous fiscal year and the first quarter of a new one, the motorcycle division of Kawasaki Heavy Industries has continued to suffer six months in. BDN financial editor Roger Willis reports.

Half-yearly revenue to the end of September stood at £1.031bn, a 5.1% decline. But improving second-quarter sales volume of motorcycles in Europe, and off-road bikes and vehicles in the US, helped to reduce an accrued operating loss over six months to £37.6m. However, the company sees little prospect of cutting that deficit by much in its full-year forecast.

During the April-September period, Kawasaki motorcycle sales in developed countries (primarily North America and Europe) fell by 9% to 61,000. Associated revenue was 2.8% down to £362m. Bikes for emerging markets were hit much harder, with volume shrinking by 46.8% to 84,000 and revenue plunging by 27.9% to £193m. On a brighter note, sales of utility vehicles, ATVs and personal watercraft were 9.4% up to 35,000, boosting revenue by 15.8% to £331m. General-purpose petrol engines contributed another £145m.

Ongoing losses were broadly blamed on a significant decrease in emerging markets, compounded by adverse foreign exchange effects, specifically appreciation of the yen against the US dollar and emerging-market currencies.

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