René Takens, CEO of Accell Group comments: “We have seen a positive start to the year 2014. Revenues in most markets developed positively. Electrically-assisted bikes continue to be popular and they are gaining popularity in countries where the market is still in its infancy, including the United States. Furthermore our sports bikes are also proving highly popular. Barring unforeseen circumstances, we therefore maintain our previous forecast for the full year 2014 of a further increase in both turnover and profit.”
Integration of production facilities
On the earlier announced reorganization of Accell Group’s bicycle production activities in the Netherlands, the holding company states: “The integration of the production facilities of Batavus and Sparta in Heerenveen, the Netherlands is progressing according to plan.” The commercial and operational activities of the two named companies as well Koga and distributor Juncker Bike Parts are joined in a new company named Accell Nederland BV which became operational per January 1, 2014.
Automated warehouse system
On this new company, Accell Group says in its trading update published today: “To enable Accell Nederland BV to realize the expected future growth in sales of parts and accessories as efficiently as possible, Accell Group has decided to invest in an automated warehouse system (AutoStore) for the spare parts deliveries of Juncker, Batavus, Sparta and Koga. This new system will be based in our facility in Apeldoorn and will be operational from January 2015.”
Sale of Hercules completed
Accell’s trading update says further: “The sale of the German Hercules business to the German dealer cooperative Zweirad-Einkaufs-Genossenschaft eG (“ZEG”), as announced at the start of 2014, had been completed. Accell Group herewith improves the distinctive market positioning of the Accell Group brand portfolio in Germany. The divestment of Hercules has resulted in a book profit of around € 3 million for Accell Group, on a consideration of around € 20 million.”
“The Accell Group subsidiaries have considerably reduced their working capital compared to 2013. This lower working capital was largely due to a strong reduction in inventories. The sale of Hercules had led to a reduction of the loans,” concludes the trading update.