Wednesday, May 22, 2024


The motorcycle and engine division of Kawasaki Heavy Industries was hailed as a star turn by its parent, for achieving a spectacular first-quarter turnaround. BDN financial editor Roger Willis reports.

Kicking off the new fiscal year in style, KHI’s motorcycle business revenue in Q1 almost doubled, 92.7% up to £741m. And pertinent to these troubled times, that figure was 66.2% higher than Q1 turnover in the pre-Covid era of 2019. Indeed, it was by far the best result for more than four years. Booming demand for Team Green bikes in the developed world was held largely responsible.

And a muscular operating profit of £97m during this period was even more sensational, given it replaced a Q1 loss of £39m in the 2020 fiscal year — and finally overwhelmed embarrassing serial Q1 operating losses for the division since time immemorial.

Quarterly motorcycle revenue from developed countries rose by 88.7% to £304m. Emerging bike markets added 140.7% to £143m. Utility vehicles, ATVs and personal watercraft were 56.6% up to £171m. General-purpose petrol engines put on 121.1% to £123m.

Wholesale motorcycle shipment volume into developed areas was 89.7% up to 55,000. Europe took the biggest slice, rising by 31.3% to 21,000. But the US market grew much faster, stacking on 233.3% to 20,000. Japanese domestic demand accounted for 6000, a 200% increase. Canada doubled its share to 2000 and Australia improved by 50% to 3000.

Wholesale volume input to emerging countries climbed by 144% to 61,000 bikes. Among notable performers, the Philippines came out on top, stacking on 121.4% to 31,000. Indonesia recovered from just 1000 bikes in the April-June period last year to 11,000. China trebled its requirements to 9000.

Yen-sterling translation at forex rates applicable on 10 August    


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