Kawasaki Sales Up 8%

Japan's Kawasaki Heavy Industries (KHI) says net sales for the first six months of its fiscal year, ended Sept. 30, totaled 699.5 billion yen ($6.17 billion), up 8.3% from 645.8 billion yen ($5.70 billion) during the same six months of the prior year. In North America, sales fell 1.2 percent to 118.2 billion yen ($1.04 billion).

Worldwide sales for KHI's Consumer Products & Machinery business — of which powersports vehicles are a part — increased 11.9 percent year on year to 212.5 billion yen ($1.87 billion). The company says motorcycle sales expanded in Europe but declined in North America.

KHI President Tadaharu Ohashi says business appears to be improving worldwide, with the exception of the United States.

"The Japanese economy remained on an expansionary trend during the interim period under review, despite a slowdown in domestic personal consumption and other signs of deterioration in economic conditions, as exports and private-sector capital investment expanded," he says. "Outside Japan, conditions continued to be generally strong, especially in Europe, China, and the rest of Asia. However, as the fluctuations in foreign exchange rates and stock prices set off by the subprime mortgage loan issues in the United States suggested, concern about a deterioration in economic conditions increased and made it necessary for Kawasaki Heavy Industries to give careful attention to the business environment for its operations."

Global K
Kawasaki is in the second fiscal year of its "Global K" medium-term business plan. Ohashi says the group is moving steadily toward the attainment of its objectives, but may have to "make the necessary mid-course corrections" because of the economic situation in the U.S.

"At present, in view of these circumstances, we are in the process of analyzing and identifying issues to be addressed, aimed at reviewing and revising the plan next year," he says.