Harley-Davidson Posts First YTD Growth since 2006

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Harley-Davidson had some good news to report in its Q2 2011 financial report, as the Milwaukee company reports selling 53,599 units to customers in the US during the three-month period, and total of 83,396 units worldwide (120,642 units worldwide so far this year). These sales figures translate into a 5.6% sales increase worldwide, and an even more impressive 7.5% sales bump in the United States market.

While those increases might seem modest, CEO Keith Wandell’s restructuring efforts have clearly been paying off for the Bar & Shield brand as operating income was up 36.8% for Q2, while revenue was up only 18% to $1.34 billion. This is also the first year-over-year quarterly rise for unit sales that Harley-Davidson has seen since the Q4 2006. Read that last sentence again, but it’s sort of a big deal for Harley-Davidson.

With this big news comes some increased revenue streams and profits. Accordingly, Harley-Davidson’s revenue increases are mostly attributed to its increase in unit sales, with motorcycles and related products growing by 39.2%, and accounting for just over $1 billion in revenue. Harley-Davidsons’ Financial Services (HDFS) revenue was actually down by 4.5%, but more importantly that division’s leaner restructuring has made the business unit more profitable, with net income from HDFS increasing 34.9%.

Because of the sales boost, Harley-Davidson has raised its shipment forecast for 2011, and now expects to ship between 228,000 and 235,000 motorcycles to dealers worldwide, an increase of 8% to 12% compared to 2010’s shipments. While the company has seen nearly five years of dwindling sales, 2011 might be the first year the company sees things turned around for it.

With these estimates, Harley-Davidson could post its first annual sales increase since 2006, and surpass numbers from both 2009 and 2010 (223,023 & 210,494 respectively). In a more common vernacular, this means 2011 is the first time the company hasn’t relatively sucked in over five years, but we think Wandell says it better:

“While we are pleased by Harley-Davidson’s second-quarter results, including the strong jump at retail in the U.S., our focus remains squarely on sustaining this progress through the ongoing implementation of our business strategy,” said Keith Wandell, President and Chief Executive Officer of Harley-Davidson, Inc. “We also believe the continued improvement in our results in the face of ongoing consumer and economic uncertainty speaks to the power of the Harley-Davidson brand globally.”

In other news, Harley-Davidson stock (NYSE: HOG) was up 8.94% for the day at the time of this writing.

Source: Harley-Davidson