The story of Italian motorcycle companies falling into bankruptcy is not a new one, but Benelli’s version of the narrative is a strangely interesting departure from the norm. Let us explain.
Things apparently kicked off when Benelli failed to pay WP Suspension roughly €120,000 for suspension pieces. WP eventually took Benelli to court, despite the Italian company’s commitment to repay its debt.
An Italian court in Pesaro then declared Benelli bankrupt, and ordered the sum owed to be paid. Somewhere in this process, some of Benelli’s completed motorcycles were seized by a trustee, as collateral for payment.
This spurred Benelli’s Chinese owners, the Qianjiang Group, to release a statement after the court’s ruling, saying that the Italian brand is strong, and has ample cash on-hand to repay its debts (rumored to be in the €1 million range), and has already begun doing so.
As you would expect, Benelli is not pleased with the Pesaro court’s ruling, and is appealing its decision with the Court of Appeal of Ancona.
Meanwhile, the true stature of Benelli is a bit murkier though, with the Italian brand claiming a €800,000 loss in 2014, and a €5.7 million loss in 2015. However, reports from Italy though suggest that Benelli’s cash flow is in the black for the first six months of the year.
What we do know is that Benelli debuted a strong lineup of motorcycles at the 2015 EICMA show in Milan, which surely is driving a new boost in sales, and more excitement in the industry over the fabled Italian brand.
Time will tell how Benelli manages itself through this financial pickle, but unfortunately the ending to this story is almost always the same.
New Benelli Motorcycles that Debuted in 2015:
Source: Il Fatto Quotidiano