News Article

Accell Group Realizes Outstanding Results Except in its Home Market


HEERENVEEN, the Netherlands – Big double digit growth figures are presented today by Accell Group NV in its report on the financial results for 2015. The company’s Haibike brand outperformed in particular with its e-MTBs and is now Accell’s biggest brand. Disappointing however are the company’s results on its home market, the Netherlands.

Accell Group Realizes Outstanding Results Except in its Home Market
“We expect to continue to be a frontrunner,” said René Takens, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Accell Group. – Photo Accell Group

René Takens, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Accell Group: “We recorded a solid increase in turnover and profit in 2015. The continuing growth in the sales of electric sports bikes (e-MTBs) in various European countries made a particularly strong contribution to this increase in the results.”

Improved margin

“The largest growth was noted in Germany, where turnover now accounts for 23% of the total turnover. In North America, the brands performed well among multi-sports clients, but the position with independent bike dealers (IBD members) has still not improved. The improvement in Accell Group’s operating profit and net profit was largely due to the 9% organic increase in turnover growth. The margin improved, partly as a result of the greater contribution from E-bikes in the turnover.”

“Cycling will continue to be highly popular for mobility, recreational and sports purposes in the years ahead. We expect to continue to be a frontrunner thanks to our high-quality products and we also expect to add new innovations to make cycling even more attractive for various purposes. Based on the positive underlying trends we expect a further growth of the turnover and results for 2016, barring unforeseen circumstances,” said René Takens.

Accell Group booked an operating profit of € 58.5 million in 2015, 33% higher than the € 44.1 million reported in 2014. Net profit was 22% higher at € 32.3 million in 2015 (2014: € 26.5 million). Turnover increased by 12% to € 986.4 million (2014: € 882.4 million). Turnover rose organically by 9%, largely on the back of higher electric bike sales.

Turnover per country (amounts x € million)

Netherlands         222      -5%
Germany             227      +16%
North America    138      +16%
Rest of Europe    368      +14%
Other countries   31        +2%

Bicycle sales

In the bicycle segment, turnover increased by more than 9% to € 719.0 million in 2015 (2014: € 658.1 million). The largest increase was in Germany (+ 16%). The average price per bicycle rose to € 437 (2014: € 377) on the back of the increase in the turnover contribution from electric bikes. Sales of electric bikes increased by 20% and now account for 45% of total bicycle turnover (2014: 41%).

Turnover in sports bikes was up 5% due to higher sales of the more expensive sports bikes of the German and French brands. Turnover in traditional bicycles came in 2% higher. The total number of bicycles sold stood at 1,642,000 (2014: 1,725,000). The segment result was 22% higher at € 56.3 million (2014: € 46.3 million).

Turnover in the Netherlands down

Turnover of the total Dutch specialist retail sector remained stable, yet Accell Group’s bicycle turnover in the Netherlands was down by 7%. The decline in the turnover was largely the result of the strong competition from e-bikes and the growth in popularity of other sales channels. Sales in the specialist retail sector were down partly due to the impact of the termination of the corporate bicycle scheme in 2014. This sparked a considerable increase in sales at the end of 2014, with the end of the scheme in sight. Accell Group sales in the Netherlands were down 10%.

In Germany, turnover from bike sales was up 16%. Sales increased by 21%. This increase was largely due to the strong growth in sports e-bikes at Haibike, Winora and Ghost. Sales of e-bikes produced by Accell Group brands were up 38% in Germany. This means Accell Group once again outperformed the market average in Germany. According to market estimates, the number of electric bikes sold each year in the overall German market increased to 520,000 bikes in 2015 (2014: around 450,000).

Ghost drives North America turnover

Accell Group’s bicycle turnover in North America increased in the multi-sports channel, which is important to Accell Group. This increase was partly driven by the introduction of the German Ghost brand. Sales at traditional bicycle dealers (IBD) lagged expectations and declined by some 10% in US dollars. Thanks to the strength of the US dollar, North American turnover increased when translated into euros.

Accell Group’s French brand, Lapierre, halted sales in the USA because of the too low returns. Since the market for electric bicycles in North America remains limited, the increase in turnover in that segment was also limited. The average price did increase. In 2016, Accell Group will take additional measures to strengthen the position its own Raleigh brand in the market.

Raleigh sales up in the UK

In the Other European countries, the main markets are France, the United Kingdom, Belgium, Scandinavia, Austria and Switzerland. Turnover in the region increased by 22% last year. In France, bike sales were up, both at Lapierre and in exports from the German and Dutch companies. In Belgium, sales of Dutch and German bikes recorded particularly strong growth. In the United Kingdom, turnover of the Raleigh brand increased by 20%.

Turnover in Switzerland was higher, primarily due to a rise in sales of the electric bikes produced by its German and French brands, both via traditional dealers and multi-sports channels. Haibike, Ghost and Lapierre also have a solid position in Austria and France, largely on the back of sports bikes, and turnover also increased in those countries.

Accell Group’s own organisations in Finland, Sweden and Denmark are active across the whole of Scandinavia, with sales of the Finnish brands Tunturi and Nishiki (Finland only), as well as its Dutch, German and French brands. Bicycle turnover in Scandinavia increased last year. In southern Europe, sales to Spain and Italy were up, mainly in sports bikes of the Lapierre, Ghost and Haibike brands. In Italy, we are active via

In other countries, Turkey and the Far East in particular are important markets. The turnover in Turkey increased, Accell Bisiklet is the most important bike supplier. In other Asian countries, turnover is relatively modest and was comparable to 2014 in the year under review. Bicycle turnover in Japan increased, while turnover in Australia declined. Licensing income from the Raleigh and Diamondback brands worldwide was higher last year.



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