NUNSPEET, Netherlands (17 January 2000) -- Last week Shimano announced that it failed to meet the 2% sales increase forecast for the 1999 fiscal year. In fact, Group sales and profit dropped 9% to EUR1.184 billion and EUR116 million, respectively. Likewise, Shimano Japan saw total sales drop by 10% to EUR1.140 billion.
Last year the company's production site in Sakai (near Osaka) was responsible for 96.3% of the Group's total sales. " That's because most of the company's billing is made by Shimano in Japan," said Frank Peiffer, marketing director of Shimano Europe. The Italian facility is one of the rare examples of doing its own billing.
In 1999, Shimano Japan saw sales decrease on all fronts. Bicycle component sales were down 11% to EUR818 million--EUR99 million on the domestic market (-3%) and EUR719 million in exports (EUR719 million; -12%)--while fishing equipment (EUR291mn) and 'others' (EUR31mn) were down 5%.
Peiffer says that in 1999 about 70-75% of Shimano's total sales came through bicycle components, 25% through fishing equipment and 3-5% through 'others'. Approximately 5-10% of the bicycle component production stays in Japan, while 10-15% are exported to the US, 35% to Europe and 45% to Taiwan. It should be noted that a portion of the products sent to Taiwan or produced at Shimano's Taiwan production facility are shipped out to other Asian countries. Peiffer points out that these figures say nothing about where these products will be finally used: "It's just the shipment to the bicycle manufacturers." Shimano estimates that approximately 45-50% of its bicycle components are used in Europe and 30% in America.
The Shimano Group expects a 9% increase in sales for 2000. This year Shimano will also implement for the first time a 13-month fiscal year ending on 31 December instead of the usual 20 November. In 2001 then it will return to its normal, 12-month fiscal year. (JB)