Boosted by the depreciation of the yen, Shimano saw its sales increase by 29.5 percent to 98.02 billion yen (€728.3m-$815.6m) in the first quarter of 2015, advancing more strongly with its bicycle components than with its fishing tackle products. Operating earnings jumped by 63.0 percent to ¥23.19 billion (€172.3m-$193.0m) and net income ended up 104.8 percent higher than in the year-ago period at ¥20.44 billion (€151.9m-$170.1m).
Bicycle components delivered increases of 34.2 percent in revenues, up to ¥81.94 billion (€608.8m-$681.8m), and 65.1 percent in operating income, up to ¥22.03 billion (€163.7m-$183.3m). The lower yen stimulated brisk order-taking, said Shimano.
According to Shimano, retail sales of bicycles were brisk in Europe and North America, reflecting growing interest in city bikes, so distributors' inventories remained slightly lower than normal. Inventories were somewhat high in Japan, where sales of sports bikes remained robust, while those of community bikes were weak.
Robust growth was maintained in emerging markets, but retail sales of sports bicycles in China were virtually unchanged from the level of a year ago.
Shimano's sales of fishing tackle went up by 9.9 percent to ¥15.99 billion (€118.8m-$133.1m) in the quarter, and their operating income rose by 34.1 percent to ¥1,197 million (€8.89m-$9.96m). Sales increased in Europe, despite a slowdown in Eastern Europe, as well as in North America. In Japan, unusually heavy snowfalls and rough weather led to a sluggish start of the angling season.