Sept. 6, 2010 – Finance Digest

Yamaha’s 4-wheel sales drop slightly

Yamaha is reporting different performance from the two- and four-wheel sides of its North American business from its fiscal first half.
The company’s revenue from its power products division, which includes ATVs and side-by-sides, was nearly on par with a year ago, dropping only 6 percent in the first half.
Yamaha said retail sales of ATVs in the United States fell from the previous-year quarter but wholesale shipments grew following previous adjustments made to market stocks.
Total North America power products revenue amounted to more than $260 million for Yamaha’s fiscal first half. The report did not provide a unit volume total.
Yamaha’s wholesale motorcycle sales in North America dropped more than 50 percent to 35,000 units during that same time, the company reported.
The company’s motorcycle sales also fell in Europe, declining 20.5 percent to 135,000 units.
In its marine division, Yamaha said its outboard motor retail sales fell but its wholesale shipments grew due to previously adjusted market stocks.
The company’s overall North American sales for its second quarter decreased 8 percent compared to the year-ago period. North American sales totaled more than $600 million for the period.
Overall, the company reported a 17 percent gain in overall sales for its second quarter due in part to growing revenue in smaller markets.

Arctic Cat announces new floorplan financing agreement

Arctic Cat announced it has entered into an agreement with TCF Commercial Finance Canada to provide inventory floorplan financing for Arctic Cat’s Canadian dealers, effective immediately.
The new multi-year financing program replaces Arctic Cat’s current financing agreement in Canada with Textron Financial Corp., which is exiting the dealer floorplan business.
“TCF Commercial Finance Canada shares our commitment to the powersports industry and to meeting the inventory financing needs of our ATV and snowmobile dealers in Canada,” Christopher Twomey, Arctic Cat’s CEO, said in a press release. “We are pleased to announce our new exclusive arrangement.”

Piaggio: Sales improve despite North America decline

The Piaggio Group increased its two-wheel sales in its fiscal first half despite a sharp sales decline in North America.
The company’s two-wheel sales improved nearly 6 percent due primarily to its Vietnam subsidiary, which got under way just a year ago.
Piaggio’s sales dipped more than 70 percent in North America compared to a year ago with unit sales totaling more than 3,000 units. Part of this decrease was due to a temporary stop in sales in Canada where the company changed its distribution.
Overall, however, the Piaggio Group increased its revenue by more than 3 percent compared to the year-ago period. Its net profit also increased, by more than 29 percent.
Looking forward, the Italian company said it will focus its R&D on the development of energy-efficient engines with little or zero environmental impact.

Finance company expands into powersports industry

MyFinanceGuys.com, a Salt Lake City, Utah-based finance and technology firm, has expanded into the powersports industry with a product designed to create consumer financing for motorcycle, PWC and snowmobile dealers, according a company press release.
MyFinanceGuys.com offers real-time F&I processing through its proprietary Web application. The application offers menu selling, application submission and a digital forms program.
“We’ve hired a software development team to transform the F&I process into a Web application that powersports dealerships can use to guide customers through the retail financing process,” Billy McKee, president, said in the release. “The system can be accessed through any computer with an Internet connection.”
MyFinanceGuys.com offers two packages for powersports dealerships, including one for dealers with an in-house F&I department and another for dealerships that don’t have an F&I system in place.

Easton-Bell sales rise in most recent quarter

Easton-Bell Sports, a manufacturer and distributor of helmets and other accessories, reported rising sales in its most recent quarter.
The company’s Action Sports segment, which includes products for powersports, snowsports, cycling and other fitness-related activities, had quarterly revenue totaling $6.6 million, a nearly 8 percent increase over the year-ago quarter.
The company’s overall sales rose to more than $202 million, an 8 percent rise over the year-ago quarter. Easton-Bell noted a favorable currency exchange helped boost its sales.
In its quarterly report, the company noted the challenging retail conditions that continue in the marketplace.
“We have experienced the effect of consumers trading down price points and delaying certain discretionary purchases, which has resulted in retailers’ reluctance to place orders for inventory in advance of selling seasons,” the Easton-Bell earnings report noted.

ADP ends fiscal year with slight revenue growth

ADP Inc. had slight revenue growth in its recently concluded fiscal year as the company reported sales of $8.9 billion.
“Our fiscal 2011 forecasts anticipate no changes in the current economic environment,” ADP CEO Gary Butler said in a press release. “We anticipate difficult expense and earnings comparisons during the first half of fiscal 2011, primarily as a result of increased sales and service investments which we began during the second half of fiscal 2010.”
In its fourth quarter, ADP revenues increased 4 percent compared with the fourth quarter of fiscal 2009. Revenue growth was partially attributed to favorable foreign exchange rates.
ADP’s Dealer Services division revenues were flat for the fourth quarter and declined 3 percent for the year, 4 percent organically. ADP, however, noted its Dealer Services gained market share. However, revenues were negatively impacted by the effect of ongoing dealership closings and lower international software license fee revenues.
Butler noted the company “signed two strategic acquisitions during the fourth quarter. These transactions have not yet closed and are therefore not included in our forecasts for fiscal 2011.”

Scooter manufacturer offers consumer financing

The Auto Moto Corp., a three-wheel scooter manufacturer, will offer consumer financing through Net Loan Funding and an extended service agreement through Endurance Dealer Services and NAC, announced the company.
Financing is now available for qualified borrowers for a 36-month term at 7.93 percent or a 60-month term at 8.58 percent. Applicants can apply online via TheAutoMoto.com and will receive an automated approval immediately.
Working together with Endurance Dealer Services and NAC, The Auto Moto Corp. also has finalized a deal to offer an extended service contract that would extend the existing one year parts warranty for The Auto Moto three-wheel scooter to either a two- or three-year, unlimited mile, extended service agreement that will pay 100 percent of parts and labor on all covered components. PSB

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