Accell Scores Double Digit Growth
HEERENVEEN, the Netherlands – In the first half of 2015 Accell Group booked an operating profit of € 49.1 million, an increase of 29% from the € 38.2 million recorded in the first half of 2014. Net profit was up 21% at €31.9 million from € 26.3 million in the first half of 2014 while turnover was up 13% at € 537.8 million. The organic increase in net turnover came in at 11%, which was mainly the result of of higher sales of e-bikes and sports bicycles in the higher segment.
René Takens, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Accell Group: “We recorded a positive development of turnover and profit in the first half of 2015, which included a spring season that was not particularly cold but did see a great deal of rain and wind in Europe. We are clearly benefiting from our leading position in e-bikes market, which now represent 34% of our turnover. We are ahead in the field of technological innovations and the introduction of new Haibike performance e-bikes and Sparta and Haibike e-speed bikes. Both new products have the clear potential to further boost our organic growth.”
Acquisitions of Comet and CSN
Takens continues: “The turnover in bicycle parts and accessories also increased, both organically and as a result of the acquisitions of Comet and CSN. In recent years the targeted acquisitions have contributed to our current position as one of the main European suppliers. The reorganisation and repositioning operation in North America is progressing well. We have boosted our position among multi-sports chains, with our brand Diamondback, as well as through the introduction of our German brand Ghost. In the traditional American bicycle retail trade (IBD) we were confronted with tough conditions. The performance of Raleigh as well asour bicycle parts and accessories were below expectations. Barring unforeseen circumstances, we expect an increase in turnover and result in the second half of 2015.”
In het bicycles segment Accell Group’s turnover came in 12% higher at € 432.7 million in the first half of 2015. The total number of bicycles sold came in at 985,000 in the first half of 2015. The average retail proce increased by 16% to € 439. Turnover from traditional bicycles was up 4%, while turnover from sports bikes increased by 8%. Provisional market figures from the retail trade organisation suggest that the market in the Netherlands declined by 7% in the first half year, in terms of the number of bicycles sold. This decline in volume was partly offset by higher sales of e-bikes. The number of bicycles Accell Group sold in the Netherlands declined by 5% while Accell’s e-bike sale at specialist retailers to consumers came in slightly higher.
Solid sales of Haibike performance e-bikes
In Germany the turnover of bicycles increased by 22% organically compared with the first half of 2014, largely due to solid sales of Haibike performance e-bikes. Demand for this relatively new and special category of e-bikes saw continued strong growth. The growth in sports bicycles in the higher segment also continued due to solid sales of Ghost bikes.
In the rest of Europe, turnover increased largely on the back of Haibike’s growth. The key countries are France, Belgium, Switzerland, Austria and the United Kingdom. In Scandinavia and Italy, the turnover also increased largely due to higher sales of e-bikes.
In North America, turnover in dollars was up 2%. Bicycles sales of the Diamondback brand increased due to deliveries to multi-sports chains. The newly-introduced German brand Ghost made a solid contribution to turnover growth in this sales channel. The turnover of Raleigh brand bicycles to specialist retailers declined, partly due to competition of internet sales. The Raleigh brand currently sees a renewed brand positioning. Accell Group will also adjust its North American sales organisation. Sales of the e-bikes that were introduced this year were higher, but this segment remains modest for now.