Derby Cycle, the leading German bicycle maker that was acquired at a majority by Pon Holdings of the Netherlands last year, lifted its sales by 10.5 percent to €219.8 million for the nine months until the end of June, in spite of the wet spring weather that depressed bicycle sales in some large European markets.
The company sold 4.4 percent fewer bicycles than in the same months last year, reaching about 395,000 units, but their average value increased owing to a jump of 21.8 percent in sales of electric bicycles to nearly 89,000 units.
Sales climbed by 13.0 percent to €150.2 million in Germany, compared with a rise of 4.2 percent to €61.2 million for other European markets and an expansion of 15.9 percent to €8.3 million for other international markets. Derby's Ebit jumped by 9.4 percent to €20.9 million, but the figure was affected by onetime costs.
The growth was at the lower end of the company's expectations, on account of the persistent rain that did not encourage German consumers to cycle in the spring and summer. Derby therefore predicted that its sales would end the fiscal year at the lower end of a forecast ranging from €250 million to €270 million, and that its Ebit margin for the year should land at 7 to 8 percent, compared with a previous forecast of 8 to 9 percent.
Meanwhile, it emerged at Eurobike that Derby Cycle had taken over the European organization of Cervélo, the Canadian road cycling brand that was also acquired by Pon Holdings. This huge Dutch car trading business stormed into the bicycle industry by taking over Gazelle, Derby Cycle and Cervélo – making it the second-largest Dutch bicycle group after Accell. The company also indicated ahead of Eurobike that it was still scouting for more acquisitions.
Cervélo's European head office in Switzerland was closed down a few weeks ago, and its sales and marketing teams were reformed at Cloppenburg in Germany, where Derby is based. While Cervélo previously sold mostly framesets in Europe, complete bicycles will now be assembled in Cloppenburg.
Furthermore, Cervélo's European distribution network will be widened as agents and salespeople for Focus, one of Derby's brands, will start selling the Canadian brand in European countries it did not previously cover, particularly in Eastern Europe, Turkey and Russia. As part of the changes, which became effective at Eurobike, Cervélo agents were replaced with Focus partners in a few countries where the German company is more strongly established.
Europe made up about 40 percent of Cervélo's sales last year, but Phil White, the company's chief executive, said that the rate would increase in the coming years on the back of Derby's support. The company is on the lookout for a manager to head up its new European unit in Cloppenburg.