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Old 10-15-2009, 08:30 AM   #1
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HD "on the rocks"

Dumps Buell and stake in MV agusta

http://www.jsonline.com/business/64352232.html

Harley drops Buell line, income plummets
By Rick Barrett of the Journal Sentinel

Updated: Oct. 15, 2009 8:06 a.m.


Harley-Davidson stock tracker (HOG)

Harley-Davidson Inc. said Thursday it will discontinue its Buell motorcycle brand and divest its recently acquired MV Agusta lineup as part of the company's long-term business strategy.

The news that Harley was dropping two lineups came as the struggling manufacturer also said that its third-quarter income fell 84% to $26.5 million, or 11 cents a share, from $166.5 million, or 71 cents a share a year ago.

The company had $1.12 billion in sales in the quarter, down 21% from $1.42 billion in the third quarter of 2008. Worldwide motorcycle sales at Harley dealers fell 21% during the third quarter compared with the same period in 2008. The company said it shipped 27% fewer motorcycles in the quarter.

In a news release, Harley said it would discontinue its Buell brand, based in East Troy, and divest the Italian MV Agusta brand. The Buell decision will result in the loss of about 80 manufacturing jobs in East Troy and about 100 salaried positions.

"The fact is we must focus both our effort and our investment on the Harley-Davidson brand, as we believe this provides an optimal path to sustained, meaningful long-term growth," CEO Keith Wandell said in the release.

Harley, the world's largest manufacturer of heavyweight motorcycles, has been restructuring as it has sought to cope with weaker sales. The company has cut more than 1,000 jobs, implemented temporary production shutdowns, and is considering closing its assembly plant in York, Pa.

Even many die-hard Harley loyalists, caught by the severity of the economic downturn, haven't bought new bikes.

In July, the company trimmed its shipment forecast for this year to 212,000 to 228,000 bikes, as much as 30% fewer than in 2008. On Wednesday, Harley shares climbed to one of their highest levels in a year after Wells Fargo & Co. upgraded the stock, citing a possible increase in motorcycle shipments to dealers. A drop in motorcycle inventory this year should mean a "low single-digits" rise in shipments in 2010 and 2011, Tim Conder, an analyst at Wells Fargo Securities, wrote in a note to investors.

Conder changed the share rating to "outperform" from "market perform." "Investors are yet to fully appreciate" the potential shipment increase, benefits from cost cutting, profit from Harley's financial-services division and a possible resumption of share repurchases, Conder wrote.
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Last edited by RACER X; 10-15-2009 at 08:34 AM.
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Old 10-15-2009, 08:52 AM   #2
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Say that on Yahoo finance.

After the AMA basically hands HD the Superbike championship by allowing them to bypass all those pesky little rules HD decides to drop Buell altogether.

I hope a serious investment group (like TPG) picks up MV and turns it around. I would hate to see the marque fold.
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Old 10-15-2009, 09:00 AM   #3
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You mean everyone can't afford $18K motorcycles right now???

Supply/Demand curves are a huh....
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Old 10-15-2009, 09:03 AM   #4
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Quote:
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Say that on Yahoo finance.

After the AMA basically hands HD the Superbike championship by allowing them to bypass all those pesky little rules HD decides to drop Buell altogether.

I hope a serious investment group (like TPG) picks up MV and turns it around. I would hate to see the marque fold.
word. Looks like even the mighty marketing machine of HD is getting pounded by the obama economy.
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Old 10-15-2009, 09:08 AM   #5
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http://www.buell.com/en_us/ <<What Erik Buell has to say

yet another reason to hate HD

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Old 10-15-2009, 09:11 AM   #6
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Yes and no, because the "obama economy" has tried to help out GM, but their figures are still down. They are failing to fluctuate with the market.
They want their stockholder's equity to maintain on their balance sheets, yet their profit/loss statements are a joke.

Looks like HD is taking the same stance. I wonder WHEN they'll realize their business models can't/won't hold up to foreign competition.
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Old 10-15-2009, 09:20 AM   #7
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I wonder WHEN they'll realize their business models can't/won't hold up to foreign competition.
They wont. Greed is the name of their game.
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Old 10-15-2009, 09:38 AM   #8
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http://www.superbikeplanet.com/2009/...buellfolds.htm

Interesting times we are in for sure....
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Old 10-15-2009, 09:43 AM   #9
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I haven't spent a dime in a HD dealership since the day they told me they couldn't put new fork seals in my Dyna because it was "too old" they wouldn't work on anything over ten years old...What kind of BS is that??? We weren't talking about rebuilding the engine or transmission here... Last time I checked fork seals haven't changed all that much...

In essence what they were saying was "we won't maintain an older bike, you should buy a new one"...
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Old 10-15-2009, 09:55 AM   #10
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Quote:
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I haven't spent a dime in a HD dealership since the day they told me they couldn't put new fork seals in my Dyna because it was "too old" they wouldn't work on anything over ten years old...What kind of BS is that??? We weren't talking about rebuilding the engine or transmission here... Last time I checked fork seals haven't changed all that much...

In essence what they were saying was "we won't maintain an older bike, you should buy a new one"...
Wow I thought we were the only ones! My dad dropped his Dyna Glide SS a few years ago to avoid a kid who ran out in the street at 15mph in the neighborhood. Damaged Legend forward controls, dented tank, and exhaust COVER. Said they wouldn't work with the insurance because it should have been "totalled" and he should upgrade.
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Old 10-15-2009, 09:59 AM   #11
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http://www.superbikeplanet.com/2009/...buellfolds.htm
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Old 10-15-2009, 10:06 AM   #12
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Old 10-15-2009, 10:10 AM   #13
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Quote:
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I haven't spent a dime in a HD dealership since the day they told me they couldn't put new fork seals in my Dyna because it was "too old" they wouldn't work on anything over ten years old...What kind of BS is that??? We weren't talking about rebuilding the engine or transmission here... Last time I checked fork seals haven't changed all that much...

In essence what they were saying was "we won't maintain an older bike, you should buy a new one"...
what a joke. I can't believe so many people love this company. I was really hoping Indian would have stayed around and gave them a run for their money and make them compete. I have always liked Indian better. Don't get me wrong I like Harleys and have alot of friends that ride them but the the factory and dealerships are such .
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Old 10-15-2009, 10:19 AM   #14
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Old 10-15-2009, 10:20 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tumper View Post
I haven't spent a dime in a HD dealership since the day they told me they couldn't put new fork seals in my Dyna because it was "too old" they wouldn't work on anything over ten years old...What kind of BS is that??? We weren't talking about rebuilding the engine or transmission here... Last time I checked fork seals haven't changed all that much...

In essence what they were saying was "we won't maintain an older bike, you should buy a new one"...

The older bike policy is at several dealerships, not just HD.
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Old 10-15-2009, 11:52 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tumper View Post
I haven't spent a dime in a HD dealership since the day they told me they couldn't put new fork seals in my Dyna because it was "too old" they wouldn't work on anything over ten years old...What kind of BS is that??? We weren't talking about rebuilding the engine or transmission here... Last time I checked fork seals haven't changed all that much...

In essence what they were saying was "we won't maintain an older bike, you should buy a new one"...
dude, no offense, but just about every bike dealership is like that. very very few still work on older models.
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Old 10-15-2009, 11:58 AM   #17
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you hit the nail on the head right there. With their Vtwins that is HDs core, there is no "real" competition. Sure the Japanese bikes have cruisers but they're such a small part of their line and the companies put so little into it that it's no real competition to HD's core. HD tries to go against BMW & KTM with the adv bikes or everyone else in the sportbike market with their Buell line of sportbikes and HD gets crushed.

The HD model just will not work against true competition.
i disagree, several people feel that the metric bikes are great competition for HD, but they sell 50 HD's to every 1 metric cruiser in the US. The buell's didn't follow HD's marketing model, nor their engineering model. It was Erik Buell's insistence that they use a hopped up Sportster engine for so long that dissuaded so many potential buyers. That engine couldn't keep pace with the Japanese and Italians, nor was it anywhere near as civilized. Buell never built a great bike. They built good ones, but in the markets they tried to compete in, good doesn't cut it. The company's failure was inevitiable. , even before Harley bought them the company was about to fold.

back to harley, even in these economic times HD is still doing 1.2 BILLION dollars of revenue PER QUARTER and is still on par to be over 125 million in the black by the end of the year. yes their profits aren't near what they were, but they are still selling bikes, and they are still making money. HD won't be going bankrupt any time soon.
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Old 10-15-2009, 12:28 PM   #18
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HD will sell some more shirts, bandanas, assless chaps, and thongs. It will pull them out of these hard economic times.
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Old 10-15-2009, 12:30 PM   #19
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Old 10-15-2009, 12:47 PM   #20
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