A poor summer in Europe left some of Accell’s companies overstocked, the Group revealed this week.
Higher inventories have led to increased discounts and pressure on margin in recent months – and have impacted on 2012 lines, slowing initial sales, the Group admitted.
However, Accell Group is more upbeat about the medium to long term, citing ‘good structural demand for bicycle for mobility, health and exercise’. The report also singled out electric bike sales and sports bikes as stimulating sales, but did sound a note of caution on the difficulties of predicting performance in Europe in particular.
Overall, Accell said it expects a higher turnover and higher result in 2011 compared with 2010.
Last month Accell sold its 22 per cent stake in Derby Cycle (approximately €17 million), a move that has cushioned the blow of its fine from the Netherlands Court of Appeal for Trade and Industry (CBd) in 2000, which it had also already made provision for.
“Turnover of bicycles in recent months remained below expected levels due to the bad weather during the summer months and general economic conditions,” explained Accell Group CEO René Takens. “The effects vary per country. In Germany demand continued to be strong – with growing popularity of electric bikes and innovative sports bikes – and the market grew. Market developments in the other countries remained weak.
“The sale of bicycle parts and accessories runs well,while turnover from the fitness activities remains difficult. This years result is strongly influenced by a number of (material) non-recurring items.We are dealing with previously announced one-time additional costs due to scaling back of the fitness activities and an unexpected setback concerning the set NMa-fine in connection with a case that goes back to mid 2000. In contrast to these one-time costs, we have realized a substantial book profit on the sale of our stake in Derby Cycle which more than compensates the mentioned one-time costs.”
The Accell Group includes the brands Batavus, Koga, Sparta, Winora, Hai Bike, Ghost, Lapierre, Atala, Redline, Tunturi and XLC.