HEERENVEEN, The Netherlands (BRAIN)—Accell Group cashed in on the growing popularity of bikes for transportation last year, posting a 6 percent increase in sales and a 15 percent spike in profit.
Sales revenue for the Dutch bike and fitness company grew from €538 million in 2008 to €572.6 million last year with 5 percent organic growth, Accell Group said in a press release issued last Friday.
Net profit was up 15 percent, from €28.6 million in 2008 to €32.7 million in 2009.
The bicycle and bike parts and accessories unit, which accounts for 95 percent of Accell’s total business, was up 9 percent, from €498.6 million in 2008 to €543 million last year.
Revenue from electric bike sales made up 25 percent of total bicycle sales for the company.
“The demand for electric bicycles, mountain bikes and bicycles for special target groups in the middle and higher segment was strong, while bicycles without special innovations or contemporary design, such as traditional city bikes saw lower sales than in 2008,” the release said.
The number of bicycles sold in 2009 rose to 986,000 from 974,000 the year before, and the average selling price increased to €439 from €415 in 2008.
Profit in the segment rose 5 percent.
The majority of Accell Group’s sales occurred in The Netherlands, followed by Germany and France. Exports of sports bikes and mountain bikes to Spain, Austria and Switzerland increased, while sales of bikes and P & A in Belgium showed a rising line. In the U.S., Seattle Bike Supply saw bicycle sales drop due to the weak economy in North America, although bike P & A remained stable.
René Takens, chairman of the board of Accell Group, credited his company’s growth to trends in the cycling industry as well as strong sales in Germany and France.
“Our distinctive power in innovation and contemporary design were once again success factors. Electrical bikes, sports bikes and bikes for special target groups sold especially well. The market was more dynamic than in previous years. There were more shifts in the market, to which we had to respond quickly and effectively. This placed greater demands on our organization’s ability to adjust, but also contributed to the growth of our results. Health, environmental awareness, mobility and active recreation are and will remain important trends that stimulate consumer demand for our products. In the coming years, the use of bicycles for recreation and sports and as alternatives to the car will further increase in popularity. Based on this, we expect a further increase in turnover and result in 2010, barring unforeseen circumstances,” he said.
Accell Group owns more than a dozen bike brands including Batavus, Ghost, Hai, Lapierre, Winora and Redline.